the advocacy monitor

Independent Living News & Policy from the National Council on Independent Living

Spending Deal Reached – Take Action for FY 2018!

Last week President Trump signed the week-long Continuing Resolution (CR) that was passed by Congress to keep the government funded for another week. Early this morning, House and Senate appropriators released the text of an omnibus spending bill (PDF) to fund the rest of FY 2017. Importantly, this bill provides level funding for the Independent Living Program. While we all know this is not enough, we are very happy that no cuts to IL were made at this time.

The next step now is for Congress to start working on FY 2018 appropriations. As a reminder, all we’ve seen from President Trump is the “skinny budget” (PDF) he released in March, which outlined some of his priorities. While there has been criticism on both sides of the aisle, we do know that Congress hopes to make major cuts, many that will hit programs and departments that are important to the disability community. We know that there are a lot of issues facing our community right now, but IL funding is critical, and cuts to the IL program would be detrimental to CILs around the country. We MUST fight against any cuts that will negatively impact the Independent Living Program.

Please continue talking with your members of Congress. Please continue trying to get them to visit your CIL. Keep setting up meetings, calling, emailing, and doing whatever you can to make sure that your Senators and Representatives know how important Independent Living is to their constituents with disabilities. Only by seeing the work that the IL community is doing every day and by hearing directly from their constituents will they understand the vital need for funding and the incredible value of the IL program!