VTDDC is at the State House closely monitoring policy that could impact Vermonters with developmental disabilities...and in the summer, we also take note of national policy issues.
In July, Vermont saw two exciting milestones in the development of its ABLE Savings Program.
Total participation in. VermontABLE reached 300 active accounts. That means 300 Vermonters with disabilities are taking advantage of this new opportunity to save money without jeopardizing crucial benefits like Medicaid and Social Security.
“It has been challenging to shift people’s thinking,” explained VTDDC’s Director Kirsten Murphy. “Parents and self-advocates have been told for so long that saving money will mean losing the supports they need. But it seems like the word is getting out.”
Vermont enrollment in ABLE, as a percent of population, is ahead of many other states, Murphy said. She credits the strong partnership between the VTDDC and State Treasurer Beth Peace, who oversees the Vermont program.
In other ABLE news, Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy recently signed on as a sponsor of the ABLE Age Adjustment Act, which would expand ABLE programs to people who acquired a disability later in life, up to the age of 46. This would open the program to people with late onset neurological conditions like MS, veterans, and many others.
VTDDC has long advocated that the Vermont delegation sign on to this important bill. Please send thanks to Senator Leahy. And let's get everyone on board. Contact Senator Bernie Sanders by filling out a legislative comments form and Representative Peter Welsh, and ask them to co-sign this invaluable piece of legislation. Tell them you support the ABLE Age Adjustment Act, and you'd like them to co-sign for it too.
Contact Sue, VTDDC's Senior Planner and Policy Analyst, by email and see what else the Council is up to: Susan.Aranoff@Vermont.gov