Americans living with disabilities are among the millions of Americans who stand to benefit from the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan recently signed by President Biden. The plan includes a number of measures that have not gotten widespread attention:
- Resources for home- and community-based services and those who provide care;
- Relief checks for adults with disabilities who are considered dependents for tax purposes;
- Funding for services to school-age students in special education programs; and
- Funding to support preschoolers with disabilities and infants and toddlers served under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
But how and when those funds will be disbursed will vary by state, which makes this a good time to take this national story down to the local level. There are lots of questions about how the 2021 rescue bill will affect people with disabilities, their families and caretakers – questions that local reporters are best poised to answer.
By Susan LoTempio, board member, National Center on Disability and Journalism. Contact her @susanlotempio.