Advocates: please take action today in support of H272/S124, “An act relative to supported decision-making (SDM) agreements for certain adults with disabilities.”
Please send this letter to your Representative and Senator and ask them to support H272/S124, which would establish a legal framework for SDM in Massachusetts. The bill would:
- define SDM and establish roles for those involved
- allow people with disabilities and elders to enter into a SDM agreement with people they trust
- create protections against abuse of the model
- require that courts first consider SDM before establishing a guardianship
- establish training for people using SDM
- ensure all youth turning 18 are made aware of the SDM option at IEP meetings
The Arc and the MA Supported Decision-Making Coalition believe the time has come for SDM to be formally recognized in Massachusetts, as it has proven to be an important alternative to guardianship for certain individuals with disabilities who need assistance in decisions about finances, health, and other issues. Passing this bill does not replace guardianship. It is an additional and less restrictive option that seeks to maintain peoples’ rights, dignity, and independence.
Thank you for your advocacy over the past few weeks on our priority bills. It is making a real difference in the legislature! Our priority bills have until February 2nd to pass out of committee. Let’s keep up the momentum to secure that our bills move forward.
If you have questions on The Arc’s bills, please contact Ellen at firstname.lastname@example.org.