CDR PRAISES SENATOR GILLIBRAND FOR CO-SPONSORING THE LATONYA REEVES FREEDOM ACT
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 18, 2022
CONTACT: Zach Garafalo, Manager of Government Affairs, Center for Disability Rights, 518-362-7916 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The Center for Disability Rights joins grassroots advocates from across the country in praising Senator Kirsten Gillibrand for co-sponsoring S.3417, the Latonya Reeves Freedom Act. The bill was introduced in the United States Senate by Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO), and Senator Gillibrand joins a growing coalition of Senators including Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). A companion version (H.R. 6860) has been introduced in the House by Representative Yvette Clarke (D-NY) and Steve Cohen (D-TN). House cosponsors include James Langevin (D-RI), Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA-7), Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), and Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO-4).
The LaTonya Reeves Freedom Act is bipartisan and bicameral legislation that ensures that people with disabilities have a right to live and receive services in the community and in their own homes. The bill codifies Disabled people’s right to freedom and prevents Disabled people from being forced into institutions. It also addresses the need for affordable, accessible integrated housing which is needed for individuals with disabilities to leave institutions. The bill addresses long-standing disparities in the provision of community-based Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS), requiring that transition plans address the needs of communities of color and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender, and other underrepresented individuals.
“Passing the Latonya Reeves Freedom Act will dismantle the oppressive system that has kept Disabled people locked in institutions during the deadly pandemic,” said Bruce Darling, President/CEO of the Center for Disability Rights. “It is also integral to the work Senator Gillibrand has embraced to improve the lives of Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) through her commitment to racial justice and we commend her for seeing how institutionalization robs Disabled people of their bodily autonomy.”