It was a beautiful fall day in Greater Denver as we listened to a presentation by Xavier about himself, his family, and his recent activities. His fellow students in the elementary school class listened intently along with his mother, father, and grandparents. There should be nothing unusual about a class presentation, but my grandnephew, Xavier, happens to be a young man with Down syndrome. I may be biased, but Xavier showed a talent for showmanship – perhaps a direction for his teen and adult years.
We are pleased to announce the appointment of Ellen M. Taverna as Policy Officer at The Arc of Massachusetts. Ellen has served in the policy arena in Washington, D.C. since 2004. Recently she was the Legislative Director of the National Association of Consumer Advocates (NACA), a nonprofit organization of over 1,500 consumer protection attorneys and advocates. She developed strategies to forward NACA’s public policy and advocacy goals. Prior to joining NACA, she was the Consumer Protection Manager & Counsel for the National Association of Attorneys General.
This Saturday, Andrew Lawson will enter the Norwell High School Hall of Fame. I wrote earlier this year about Andrew’s passing and how he had brought so many people together during his life. Andrew’s life was full of achievements; the local news article announcing his induction shows Andrew embracing soccer coach Jack Browne.
There are two significant threads which underlie The Arc of Massachusetts’ mission. One thread is our mission to achieve “equity across all aspects of society.” This is a pretty tall order. Despite the progress made over the past decades, equity has not been achieved in health care, education, or transportation.
On Tuesday, September 25, WCVB aired a feature with Karen Anderson discussing the significance of Congressman Seth Moulton’s proposed HEADs UP (Healthcare Extension and Accessibility for Developmentally disabled and Underserved Population) Act of 2018. This bill, if passed, would certify the developmental disabilities community as a Medically Underserved Population (MUP).