As health care and human services providers, we are a network of compassionate professionals who share a vision: individuals of all abilities may thrive in their homes and communities. It is important to advocate on behalf of the people we serve to create opportunities and experiences that will enable them a voice about what happens in their life. Only then can we be assured their rights are being considered and their concerns are being resolved.
While advocacy has always been an important part of health care, it is especially relevant today, given the sweeping changes mandated by healthcare reform legislation. Congress hears from thousands of competing voices. The most organized voices resonate. Our network and those we serve have been largely overlooked by elected officials, and we have seen funding and human rights diminish. This is due in part to our disparate circumstances and competing interests.
It is imperative to collectively identify, monitor, and weigh in on state and federal policy and legislative issues that are relevant to our services. By raising our voices together in support of common programs and policies, we can be sure that we are heard and that policymakers understand why these services are critical.
Lissette Rivera is Vice President of Government Affairs at Scioto Properties. Lissette is responsible for cultivating relationships with government officials to foster an environment where people live healthy, independent, and fulfilled lives.
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