COVID-19 Relief Leaves Out People With Disabilities
Under pressure, federal lawmakers approved the massive stimulus package after much wrangling in late December. The measure includes $600 cash payments for many Americans — including those receiving Supplemental Security Income benefits — who earn less than $75,000 annually, with tiered amounts beyond that.
But disability advocates say that despite months of intense lobbying, the legislation is most notable for what is left out.
Much like previous COVID-19 relief legislation passed last spring, there is no dedicated funding for home- and community-based services or to help people with disabilities transition out of congregate settings, which have been ravaged by the virus.
Meanwhile, adults with disabilities who are considered dependents for tax purposes are once again ineligible for the latest round of cash payments. And, a provision in an earlier coronavirus relief bill expanding paid leave from work for parents needing to care for their children with developmental disabilities during the pandemic was allowed to expire at the end of 2020. Read more here.