Today, The Arc of Massachusetts, along with the Northeast Arc, held a legislative briefing at the Massachusetts State House. The briefing featured the video documentary from Northeast human service agencies called The Weight of Waiting.
The event was led by our champion legislators, Senator Joan Lovely and Representative Sean Garballey.
Both legislators spoke of the extraordinary need to support our workforce through The Arc’s legislative priorities that include the workforce rate increase bill, “An Act relative to rates for workers providing supports and services for individuals with disabilities“ (H171/S83) sponsored by Rep. Garballey Rep. Simon Cataldo and Senator Barry Finegold, and “An Act relative to family members serving as caregivers” (H1232/S775) sponsored by Senator Lovely and Rep. James O’Day.
Many legislators and staff also attended, showing their support, including Representative Josh Cutler, Representative Cataldo, Representative Steve Owens, Representative Mindy Domb, Representative Sally Kerans, as well as Jim Brett, the Chair of President Biden’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities.
Dean Rizzo, CEO of The Arc of Greater Brockton, and Kelly Hutton from the Center of Hope joined to explain the regional impact of the ongoing crisis. The Northeast Human Services agencies video was developed or supported by: Northeast Arc, Incompass Human Services, Bridgewell, NFI Massachusetts, Centerboard, Vinfen, Plummer Youth Promise, Key Program, and Wayside Youth & Family Network.
The Arc asks all of our lawmakers to prioritize and address the workforce crisis through these bills and the FY24 budget in front of Conference Committee.