ANCOR applauds the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee for unanimously passing S. 1332 today. This legislation will help address the direct support workforce crisis through the creation of a standard occupational classification for direct support professionals (DSPs).
The creation of an occupational classification for DSPs is necessary to begin to address a decades-long workforce crisis and will help bolster access to critical long-term home and community-based services for individuals with disabilities. Through the Medicaid Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) program, DSPs support people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to acquire, retain, and improve the skills necessary to live successfully in their homes and communities. DSPs provide not only essential caregiving, but also promote independence and community inclusion through services that range from employment supports and career development to aiding in skill development for activities of daily living, such as meal preparation, medication management, and supporting communication.
It is fitting that this committee passed S. 1332 on the 33rd anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The Medicaid HCBS program upholds the promise guaranteed by the ADA that people with disabilities must be served in the most integrated setting appropriate to the person’s needs and reflective of their choice.
ANCOR is grateful for the leadership of Senator Hassan (D-NH) for her sponsorship of the legislation and Chair Peters (D-MI) and Ranking Member Paul (R-KY) for advancing the bill through the committee. We look forward to continuing to work with these Senate leaders to get the bill passed in the full Senate.
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