The Council is federally mandated under the Developmental Assistance and Bill of Rights to advocate for public policy change and community acceptance of all people with developmental disabilities and their families.
The Council provides advocacy information to self-advocates, family members and organizations throughout the year. This hands-on learning experience is an opportunity for elected officials to meet children and adults with disabilities, family members and personnel working in the field of developmental disabilities. Please contact our offices for more information: 307-777-7230.
In a democracy, citizens have the opportunity to vote on important issues and elect politicians and representatives. ... When more people vote, they increase the chance that the issues that are important to them are taken seriously. If a minority votes, there is a risk that their preferences do not represent the majority. This is an especially significant point for people in the disability community because you have the right to many different accommodations, and it is important to have your voice heard!
Take a look at this handy information page on voting! Voting Handout
WGCDD Legislative Update 2021
During the legislative Session the council provides a state legislative update on issues that may have an impact on the disability community. Please see the bills below. This document is updated daily throughout the Legislative Session. The 2021 legislative session begins January 12, 2021. Click here to be taken to the State Legislative page.
The Capitol is open for public tours Monday-Friday, 8:00am-5:00 pm. Click here for a link to the tour booklet.
Wyoming Legislation to Watch 2021
The 66th General Session will reconvene January 27, 2021. Below are the current bills to review that could impact the disability community.
For a full list of bills, please visit https://wyoleg.gov/Legislation/2021
Attending a Legislative Meeting
In the News: December 21, 2020
End of Year Legislative Package
On Sunday night Congress approved a one-day extension of government funding to allow the final bill text of the coronavirus relief and omnibus package to be written. The package to be considered on Monday includes omnibus appropriations funding the government through September 30, 2021, a roughly $900 billion COVID relief package, multiple legislative extenders, and legislation that will end surprise billing for emergency and scheduled care.
Final language is not yet public, but we are hearing that COVID relief includes:
$600 direct ("stimulus") payments provided to individuals and children. Phases out starting at $75,000 annual income for individuals.
$300/week additional unemployment aid for 11 weeks - could last through at least March 14. Similarly, the program providing unemployment benefits for gig/contract/self-employed workers will be continued for 11 weeks.
An extension of CDC eviction moratorium through the end of January, and $25 billion in emergency rental assistance.
Does NOT include:
Funding for home and community-based services (HCBS) to support people with disabilities and older adults at home and to keep them out of nursing homes and other institutions.
Provision to ensure adult dependents qualify for stimulus payments.
Congress is working to pass a bill that funds government programs, provides some help related to the COVID emergency and allows important programs like Money Follows the Person to continue.
What it means to you:
Agreements in principle are likely to prevent a government shut down and to ensure some critical COVID relief. Education about the continued needs for people with disabilities in the COVID emergency will be needed in the new Congress and beyond.
Congress is trying to pass another COVID-19 relief package before going on their holiday break a t the end of the week.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the emergency use of a second COVID-19 vaccine developed by Moderna on Friday and national shipments of the vaccine begin today. The approval of the Moderna vaccine follows the approval of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine approved the previous week. Vaccination of Phase 1a priority population groups is underway, although it is important to note that priority groups may differ in each state. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have issued guidelines as to who should be eligible for Phase 1 (a, b, and c) vaccination, it is states that designate allocation priorities.
The CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has issued the following vaccine allocation guidance for Phase 1:
Phase 1a: frontline health workers, residents and staff of congregate care settings
Phase 1b: frontline essential workers, persons over 75 years-old
Phase 1c: remaining essential workers, persons over 65 years-old, persons with high-risk medical conditions
In the coming weeks federal, state, and local entities will continue to update guidance and plans related to distribution. The voices of advocacy will continue to be needed to educate and ensure the vaccine is equitably distributed and that everyone has the information they need to understand their vaccination decision.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccination for immediate, emergency use late Friday evening. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have issued guidelines as to who should be Phase 1 vaccination priorities. It is states, however, that designate priorities. In the coming weeks federal, state, and local entities will continue to update guidance and plans related to distribution. The voices of advocacy will continue to be needed to educate and ensure the vaccine is equitably distributed and that everyone has the information they need to understand their vaccination decision.
Learn more about what the COVID-19 vaccine that has been approved:
As of December 15, 2020 the Electoral College has confirmed Joe Biden for the United States President.
If not registered, register to vote.
Learn how to vote.
Make sure you can vote in this year's election and get ready for it.
What this means to you:
The power of the disability vote is HUGE and your voice and vote will make an impact.
Use AUCD's guide to disability policy campaign issues.
Use AUCD's plain language guide to voting.
Watch Tuesday's with Liz's episode on voting.
How could a federal shutdown affect people with disabilities?
The link below will take you to the Social Security Administration's contingency plan for a shutdown:
This link will show how Food Stamps could be affected in a shutdown:
This link will show how housing assistance could be affected by a shutdown:
This link will show how the mail could be affected by a shutdown:
Here is a link to the IRS contingency plan and an article explaining how a shutdown could affect your tax return:
Here are two links specific to how a government shutdown could affect Wyoming:
Casper Star Tribune Article:
Wyoming Public Media: