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Disability Community Advocates to Discuss Policies with Law Makers in Atlanta

Walton Options will be representing the CSRA as advocates from across the state assemble

Augusta, GA – Disability advocates from around the state including those from Walton Options for Independent Living will rally in Atlanta during January and February to raise awareness and meet with law makers on policies that will have an impact on persons with disabilities.

Meeting outside the Georgia State Capitol, disability advocates will voice their concerns about current policies and their requests for changes and considerations that would benefit the entire community including those with and without disabilities. In addition, advocates will also meet directly with their local representatives to discuss these concerns and requests more in-depth.

“The 2018 Legislative Session has a real opportunity to bring about positive change and support for the disability community in Georgia,’ explained Tiffany Clifford, Executive Director of Walton Options for Independent Living. “Through increased funding and policy support, the legislators have the opportunity to provide home and community based services for persons with disabilities who are under-served in our state.”

Advocacy Days were created by a variety of organizations across Georgia who work with the disability community on a daily basis. These organizations know the first hand barriers the disability community faces and work to bring these barriers to the attention of state law makers. In addition, organizations like the Georgia State Independent Living Council propose ways the legislators can improve policies and funding for the betterment of the disability community.

This year’s policy and funding focus is on Centers for Independent Living expansions, the Home Access Program (HAP), home and community based programs for seniors, inclusive employment, inclusive post-secondary education opportunities, Medicaid program funding, and community integration.

Walton Options’ Augusta office will be sending over a dozen staff and consumers to three rallies in Atlanta – Senior Day (February 7), Independent Living Day (February 8) and the National Federation for the Blind Georgia Blind Day (February 12). “We are very excited to be attending these Advocacy Days,” stated Gaylon Tootle, an Independent Living Advocate at Walton Options. “Advocacy is one of the core services that we as a Center for Independent Living do daily – we teach our consumers how to advocate for themselves and their community. These Advocacy Days are so much more than a rally in Atlanta, they are an opportunity for someone to take another step towards independence and we are very excited.”

Additional Advocacy Days at the Capitol include Developmental Disabilities Waivers Day (January 23), Inclusive Employment Day (January 31), Medicaid Funding Day (February 14), the UNLOCK! Coalition Day (February 15) and Inclusive Post-Secondary Education Day (February 22).

For full information about these Advocacy Days or to sign-up to participate with Walton Options at Atlanta, please contact Gaylon Tootle at 706-724-6262 or email directly at gtootle@waltonoptions.org.

 About Walton Options for Independent Living

Walton Options believes all persons including those with disabilities, should be able to participate in their community. WOIL promotes equality, inclusion and independence through Personal Choice, Personal Responsibility, Community Access, Education and Employment. WOIL offers services throughout the CSRA including 16 counties in Georgia and 10 counties in South Carolina including the Low Country.

For more information about Walton Options and our services, please visit www.waltonoptions.org or call Walton Options for Independent Living, 706-724-6262.

 

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