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Association of Assistive Technology Act Programs

Policy and Advocacy

Policy and Advocacy Priorities for 2016

Legislative Priorities under Administration for Community Living (ACL)

  • Insert accurate language for the real Assistive Technology Act budget baseline for past fiscal years
  • Retrieve small increase proposed in ACL’s FY 2018 budget request
  • Collaborate with ACL regarding accessible voting in order to illuminate AT Act within ACL and to share expertise across the agency

Funding Priorities

  • Increase or at least keep the current baseline of funding for the Assistive Technology Act

Programmatic Priorities

  • Support and encourage coordination/collaboration with State Assistive Technology Act programs and states’ No Wrong Door programs

Regulatory Priorities

  • Regulatory process of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) implementation regarding accessible assessments
    • Issues regarding Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) and Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC)
  • Department of Justice’s completion of an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) to clarify obligation of entities covered by Titles II and III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to ensure websites, online systems, and other forms of information and communication technology (ICT) are accessible
  • Monitor regulations related to the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Continue to educate other organizations about the legislative language in WIOA that ties State Assistive Technology Act programs with other federal programs

Additional Legislative Priorities

  • Complex Rehab Technology (CRT)
    • CRT Separate Category Bill (H.R. 1516 / S. 1013)
    • CRT Wheelchair Accessories Bill (H.R. 3229 / S. 2196)

Coalition Advocacy

ATAP is an active member of the following Coalitions, Task Forces, and/or Groups:

ITEM Coalition

ITEM Coalition members include a diverse set of national disability organizations, aging organizations, consumer groups, voluntary health associations, and non-profit provider associations. The mission of the ITEM Coalition is to raise awareness about the importance of assistive devices, technologies, and related services in enhancing the function, independence, health status, and quality of life of people with disabilities and chronic conditions of all ages; and the barriers to access necessary devices and technologies under Medicare and Medicaid as well as other federal health programs and private plans; and build support for broad-based legislative and regulatory changes to address the problems of inadequate access to assistive devices, technologies and related services.

Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD)

The Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities is a Coalition of national consumer, advocacy, provider and professional organizations headquartered in Washington, D.C. Since 1973, the CCD has advocated on behalf of people of all ages with physical and mental disabilities and their families. CCD has worked to achieve federal legislation and regulations that assure that the 54 million children and adults with disabilities are fully integrated into the mainstream of society.

Audrey Busch, ATAP Director of Policy and Advocacy serves as a Co-Chair of the Technology and Telecommunications Task Force - The CCD Technology and Telecommunications Task Force works to guide the development of all legislation to ensure that assistive technology is not an afterthought when developing policy solutions for education, community integration, employment, and other important policy areas. ATAP is also a participant of the CCD Employment and Training Workforce Task Force and the CCD Education Task Force.

NDD United

NDD United was established in response to the Budget Control Act of 2011, which placed austere caps on federal spending for all discretionary programs through 2021 and set the stage for sequestration starting in 2013. With so much at stake for so many programs, NDD United brought together for the first time hundreds of stakeholders from across the nondefense discretionary (NDD) sectors to call for a balanced approach to deficit reduction.

National Center on Universal Design for Learning

The National UDL Task Force advocates support for UDL in federal, state, and district education policy. ATAP is one of more than forty organizations who serve on the task force to help support the UDL mission to improve academic achievement and educational opportunities for all learners.

ATAP Letters

The following letters are pertinent to the important work of ATAP and the groups it works with that advocate on behalf of individuals of all abilities:

Regulatory Comments

Comments Submitted by ATAP to CMS:

Comments Submitted by ATAP regarding document renewals:

ATAP Member Advocacy

ATAP works to educate members of congress and other federal departments on the AT Act, AT related issues, and the need for fully funding AT programs.

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