The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) this month issued guidance for institutions on allowing residents to have visitors. CMS said visitation should not be restricted “without a reasonable clinical or safety cause,” but could be limited based on local Covid-19 positivity rates or other factors.
During a Joint Finance Committee meeting on the Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) budget, lawmakers and witnesses questioned why DHSS was not requesting more money for direct support services for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. A 2018 law pledged to raise those payments, which are based on market rates more than a decade old. DHSS Secretary Molly Magarik said meeting that obligation would cost at least $40 million dollars more per year.
Disability advocates and lawmakers are pressing the Social Security Administration (SSA) to issue guidance on whether “long-haulers” – people who survive Covid-19 but continue experiencing symptoms – qualify for federal disability benefits. In a statement, the SSA said the current disability policy rules should be sufficient but did not rule out changing its approach in the future.
Jobseekers younger than 35 are increasingly demanding their employers demonstrate a commitment to diversity in the workforce, including accommodations for employees with disabilities, according to experts in employment trends and surveys of young adults. Career counselors report the shift has been especially evident since the killing of George Floyd and the resulting national conversation about systemic inequities.
In a report to the Election Assistance Commission, Rutgers researchers found that voters with disabilities reported significantly fewer barriers to access in 2020 compared to 2012. The authors attributed this in part to the increase in voting options offered due to the pandemic – though those voting in-person also reported fewer issues. Voters with visual and cognitive impairments encountered the most difficulties.