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Disability Providers Receive Relief with COVID-19 Relief Package

We finally received some relief on the federal level! Read more about it here.

Late last week Congress approved the American Rescue Plan of 2021, will provide some much-needed economic relief to the people of the United States. Of the $1.9 trillion, $13 billion will go towards home and community-based funding. The U.S House of Representatives passed the bill last Wednesday and President Joe Biden signed it by the end of the week.

“After almost a full year of leaving the most urgent needs of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities out of relief legislation, members of Congress are finally providing the resources necessary for people with disabilities to live safely, in the community, with the support they need,” said Peter Berns, chief executive officer at The Arc, an advocacy group representing individuals with disabilities. “This funding is desperately needed by the systems, providers and workforce that support people with disabilities.”

Among the wide array of provisions in the bill, here is how it will affect the disability community:

  • A 10 percent increase in the federal Medicaid match percentage (FMAP)
  • Significant expansion of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
  • $350 billion in funding for state and local governments.

ANCOR, our national trade association, also reports that “the American Rescue Plan includes several provisions targeted toward low- and moderate-income households and households of color…these provisions do have the potential for significant positive impact on the direct support workforce, which is disproportionately composed of low- and moderate-income workers and workers of color.”

Now the attention will turn to the individual states, as it will be their job to figure out how to use these funds and how they can use that funding to address providers’ most pressing needs.

Read more about how the bill will affect the disability community on ANCOR’s website.