July 2020 Wisconsin Newsletter
The Arc Wisconsin and the Governor’s Task Force Advocate for Caregiving Supports
The COVID-19 pandemic has made the state's direct care workforce crisis even more dire as many people with I/DD and their families remain secluded at home without access to adequate care.
The Governor's Task Force on Caregiving (The Arc Wisconsin's Lisa Pugh is a co-chair) has been hearing from caregivers, people with disabilities, direct support professionals, and others about how it is even more difficult to get and keep care providers, as well as challenges ensuring the safety of both workers and those receiving care. Make sure to share your comments with the Task Force now through July 14.

The Arc Wisconsin has been advocating for the direct care workforce alongside many other organizations. See recent communications to Governor Evers .

The provider network that many people rely on is also suffering with new costs and lost revenue . Ultimately, if providers go out of business there will be fewer choices for people with disabilities across our state.

In response to great advocacy by many organizations, the state is sending $100 million in payments out to providers of personal care, supportive home care, supported employment, community supported living, and other services to help them stay afloat. Learn more about those payments .
Get Ready for The Arc Experience!
We at The Arc Wisconsin are working on something we think you will enjoy: The Arc Experience podcast!

We are already talking to the movers and shakers in Wisconsin's disability community! Plan to listen to some of your favorite local leaders talk about disability rights, community living, voting, and more. You will even hear a story from one advocate who has met TWO U.S. Presidents! Coming July 15, 2020.
A Message in Solidarity Against Systemic Racism
As a disability organization, The Arc Wisconsin stands alongside the Black community, including individuals with I/DD and their families who face systemic racism and discrimination on two fronts. Black people who also have disabilities face among the worst outcomes in our society, including increased risk of harm and death when confronted by law enforcement as well as the highest rates of incarceration. We condemn systemic racism in our criminal justice system and call for immediate and meaningful reform.

Read and share this document written by and for people with disabilities about racism in our criminal justice system and what you can do.
Don't Drive? Help Is on the Way! 
"There are very few options for public transportation and the three taxicab services in our area are expensive and unreliable."

"Many transportation companies are transporting multiple individuals at the same time, so you may end up having to set aside multiple hours to [get where you need to go]."

"Reliable and safe transportation is needed. My son, who is supposed to never be left alone, was dropped off at the end of the day at a park."

This is just some of the feedback the Department of Transportation's new Wisconsin Non-Driver Advisory Committee (WiNDAC) will be hearing this month from people with disabilities and advocates. The committee was formed by DOT to discuss Wisconsin's transportation system to facilitate mobility, safety, and access for Wisconsin's non-driving populations.

Make sure to share your transportation feedback and ideas with The Arc Wisconsin to pass on to this committee by emailing [email protected] .
Future Planning Needed Now More Than Ever
“As Covid-19 sweeps across our city and nation, a lot of parents are coming to the realization that they aren’t going to be here forever and they need a plan.” – New York Times

For people with I/DD and their families, the COVID-19 pandemic has been a reminder that planning for the future can't wait. The Arc Wisconsin has future planning resources ready to help you take one step at a time to have conversations with your family about the who, what, and when of future planning. Remember: a good plan isn't just about your will or even your finances. Hear more about how COVID-19 is impacting people with disabilities and their families in this PBS NewsHour feature , including key interviews with The Arc.
Coming Together During Hard Times
The Arc Wisconsin continues to work with and on behalf of people with disabilities, their families, and direct support professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic. If you are able, please consider chipping in to support our efforts .