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The title phrase has been used in a number of ways. For many it is a sign of welcome, whether for returning family or for wayfaring individuals who needed a place to stay.

Historically, the welcome sign has often been missing for persons with disabilities, whether at school, health care settings, workplaces, and sometimes even in family homes – the latter more prevalent as we lived through the age of institutions.

Some of you saw the story of Daniel Donovan on WCVB, a 47-year-old man who needed mental health assistance but, due to a COVID diagnosis, he was admitted to the hospital. After a short stay, Daniel was released on his own and no additional review was made of his condition. His mother, Judy, had kept in touch with the hospital, but when she called on the sixth day, she was told he had been released. He was found dead 17 days later.

This is one reason why we push you to join us in our advocacy in any way you can. The Arc reflects our community – and our challenges.

All persons with disabilities – your family members, neighbors – should have the opportunity to live a good life. This is why we work with you (through your participation and financial support) to pass legislation and adequate budgets for our constituents.

Over the next month, we’ll ask you to support the hospital training bill along with other bills such as Operation House Call, accessory housing, supported decision making, expanding access for others with developmental disabilities, and others. At the same time, we’ll be encouraging the legislative conference committee to incorporate the best of both branches’ 2023 budget plans.

Judy Donovan has kept in touch with Maura Sullivan, our Senior Director of Government Affairs. Her son, Daniel, had a flag ceremony today, and Senator Joan Lovely attended it. Mrs. Donovan is dedicated to passing the hospital training bill so others don’t go through the heartache of losing a loved one so unnecessarily.

Your participation and your support is essential for our friends, family members, neighbors. Join in and when you can, support The Arc!

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