This week, Executive Director Leo Sarkissian offers a time-sensitive Call to Action on advocacy for the State Budget and Workforce Initiative; a recap of the 41st Annual Legislative Reception; meet our fourth and final 2019 Gala honoree; and much more!
Leo's Letter
An Urgent Call to Action on the State Budget

Executive Director Leo Sarkissian has an important, time sensitive Call to Action for all of our advocates regarding the incredibly limited window of time we have to act on the State Budget requests and the Workforce Initiative. Watch this brief intro, and check out the links below.

P.S. Be sure to tune into NECN tonight around 7:00pm for an interview with Leo about The Arc's Workforce Initiative!
2019 Gala: Leading by Example
Meet our Education Champion: Braeden Yee

Braeden Yee has a lot in common with most 12-year-old boys. He loves to take part in athletic activities, including basketball, soccer, baseball, and swimming. He loves to roller skate down his street. In the summer, he attends an active day camp full of fun outdoor activities like ziplining. He loves cars, and building things with his Thomas the Tank Engine train track sets. But most kids his age can’t boast that they’re a piano prodigy. Nor can they say that they are teaching future doctors and nurses across the state how to provide higher quality care to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including autism. Learn more.

In the last few weeks, we've been sharing the stories of the four champions we will be honoring at our Leading by Example gala on March 27. Tickets available now.
Government Affairs
41st Annual Legislative Reception - Building a Stronger Future: Valuing Our Workforce

On Wednesday, March 6, The Arc of Massachusetts and the Massachusetts Developmental Disabilities Council (MDDC) hosted our 41st Annual Legislative Reception at the Massachusetts State House. This year's theme, in keeping with The Arc's ongoing Workforce Initiative, was Building a Stronger Future: Valuing Our Workforce.

Over 400 individuals - including self-advocates, family members, professionals, and elected and appointed officials - attended the event, with hundreds of additional individuals viewing remotely via The Arc's Facebook livestream of the event.  Continue reading and view more photos.
Taking Stock of The Arc’s Mission and Work

With the stock market on the upswing, giving shares of appreciated stock or mutual funds can be a great way to support The Arc of Massachusetts.

In addition to making our mission possible, you may also realize significant tax benefits. For example, you don’t need to pay taxes on the appreciation of the stock. If you purchased stock for $20 per share and it is now trading at $50 per share, you can donate the stock and avoid paying taxes on the $30 in increased value. Good news even if you don’t itemize your deductions. However, if you are able to itemize your deductions under the new tax laws, you can take a charitable deduction for the fair market value of the stock, which in this case is $50 per share.

There are important details to know, so you should consult a tax advisor or your accountant for advice related to your personal circumstances. And please do let us know that you are transferring securities so that we credit you properly and issue a receipt for tax purposes. For more information, please contact Katrin Aback, Director of Development via email at aback@arcmass.org or 781-891-6270 x105.
Upcoming Calendar
Spring 2019 Regional Sessions
Pressing Issues Facing Individuals with I/DD
March 18: Chicopee
March 19: Worcester
April 3: Plymouth
April 17: Peabody

Please join Leo Sarkissian for one of four conversations across the state about pressing issues facing people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and the family members and human service agencies who assist them.

Leo will discuss the Workforce Shortage Crisis and The Arc’s new initiative to find a solution; the FY 2020 state budget; and how to increase social inclusion. Learn what you can do to be an effective advocate, so you can have an impact on the lives of people with disabilities statewide.
Credentials to Careers
Tuesday, March 19 | 12:00PM
Presenters: Jeff Gentry, Rosa Ordaz, and Jan Hollenbeck

This webinar will explore the array of entry-level employment, credential training and employer driven workforce development strategies that can equip you or your loved one with disabilities to enter the workforce.
Special Needs Trusts and ABLE Accounts
Thursday, April 4 | 12:00PM
Presenter: Pamela Tames, Esq.

This webinar will provide information about the major planning vehicles – special needs trusts and ABLE accounts – that are used to help people with disabilities become and remain eligible for need-based government benefits while preserving the use of personal assets to supplement care and ensure a fulfilling life.
Agency Spotlight