Enhance Quality of Life
for all Texans With IDD

The Arc of Texas 2021 Public Policy Priorities

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Background
When Texans with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) receive the individualized supports and services they need, they’re able to make their own decisions about how and where they want to live and the career they want to have.
Texans with IDD may require a wide variety of community services and supports.

For example, an attendant who helps with intimate tasks like bathing and dressing to support staff who provide coaching on tasks like cooking and cleaning.

Quality services and supports enhance the quality of life for Texans with IDD.

It allows them to live more independently and make their own choices.

Private insurance does not cover long-term services and supports.

For example, an attendant or job coach.

Medicaid is the only way Texans with IDD can receive critical services and supports to live, work, and participate in their communities.

Since not all Texans with IDD have access to quality community services and supports, they face the possibility of institutionalization.

Congregate-care settings like institutions—where COVID-19 can spread easily and rapidly—are high-risk places for contracting the virus. Plus, research shows that people with IDD who contract COVID-19 are at a higher risk of death than others with chronic health conditions.

Legislative Solutions
Promote accessibility for all.

Ensure public meetings and advisory committees are accessible and allow for individualized supports, so Texans with IDD can exercise their rights to participate in policymaking.

Strengthen Medicaid systems to cover gaps left by private insurance.

Adequately funding the interest list and diversion/transition waiver slots will expand the availability of fully inclusive community-living options.

Ensure compliance with the federal Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) final rule.

Fully fund the transition from facility based day habilitation to an individualized community based service, so Texans with IDD can learn and enforce important skills that allow for a meaningful day.

Support the professionals who directly impact Texans with IDD.

Fund direct-support professional rates and provide career advancement and leadership opportunities, so Texans with IDD receive person-centered planning and individualized supports.

Include self-determination in long-term supports system planning.

In addition to health and safety, ensure managed care organizations are educated on the IDD population, trained in self-determination and person-centered planning, and regulated appropriately.

Promote independence for all Texans with IDD.

This includes responsibly utilizing state funding and taxpayer dollars, so Texans with the most medically complex needs can live in their community; to develop a sustainable, data-driven IDD Strategic Plan and system that promotes individual preferences and supports across individuals’ lifespan; to comply with the Supreme Court’s Olmsted decision by creating a Promoting Independence Plan.