Survival Coalition Wisconsin

The Survival Coalition of Wisconsin Disability Organizations is a cross-disability coalition of more than 40 state and local organizations and groups. For more than 20 years, Survival has been focused on changing and improving policies and practices that support people with disabilities of all ages to be full participants in community life.

Updates

Statement on Recommendations to Improve Absentee Voting

Survival Coalition of Wisconsin Disability Organization is deeply committed to ensuring the rights of voters with disabilities to fully participate in the electoral process.  We would like to thank the Wisconsin Election Commission for their report analyzing absentee voting the April 7th Spring Election, and their recommendations to improve access to the absentee voting process.

While absentee voting was heavily utilized by voters with disabilities in the April 2020 election, Survival organizations also heard from many people with disabilities across the state who experienced barriers to voting absentee.  Some voters who wished to vote absentee could not do so because they did not receive a ballot in time, could not safely get their ballot witnessed, or were not able to upload their photo ID to request and receive a ballot.  Voters who rely on assistive technology to vote privately and independently did not have equitable access to absentee voting as Wisconsin does not have an ADA compliant accessible absentee ballot. Read more.

Statewide Survival Coalition Survey Shows COVID Challenges Could Result in Shortage of Providers Supporting People with Disabilities and Older Adults

(Madison) – A statewide survey of more than 500 disability and older adult service providers by the Survival Coalition shows nearly 20% of these small businesses fear they are not financially sustainable as a result of COVID-19. The loss of any portion of these providers will only amplify the provider shortages that already exist and result in people not getting needed supports and services that keep them healthy and able to stay in their homes.

Hundreds of providers of disability services, located throughout all regions of Wisconsin, offer supports to people with disabilities and older adults living in the community, ranging from personal care in people’s homes, to coaching in community jobs, daily living skills training, prevocational and day activities, residential services and other supports.

More than 80% of the survey respondents are small businesses serving under 100 people and with staffs under 50. Read full press release. View provider survey’s findings.

Supreme Court Ruling calls the question: how will Wisconsin reopen in a way that protects people with disabilities and older adults from COVID-19?

The state Supreme Court’s declaration that Wisconsin’s Safer at Home order extension is invalid raises many critical questions for people with disabilities and older adults. Disability and aging groups had filed an amicus brief in the case detailing how COVID-19 poses specific risks of irreparable harm to the aging and disability populations if the state reopens too quickly. Read more…

Survival Coalition Comments to Long Term Care Subcommittee of the SDMAC

Survival Coalition Comments to Long Term Care Subcommittee of the SDMAC
The Survival Coalition appreciates the opportunity to provide comments to the draft guidance documents relating to managing medically stable long-term care facility residents who have or may have COVID-19 (Guidance Document 1) and testing of patients transferring from hospitals to LTC facilities (Guidance Document 2). For the most part, we found both guidance documents to be clear, comprehensive and reasonably sensitive to the actual capabilities of LTC facilities in Wisconsin. Our main point of disagreement is with the failure to recommend testing of all transfer residents, which we believe is the only means by which a LTC facility can hope to prevent the spread of the virus within its walls. Our specific comments are: Read more…

Specific Steps Needed to Protect People with Disabilities and Older Adults in Wisconsin

The Survival Coalition of Wisconsin Disability Organizations is a cross-disability coalition of more than 40 state and local organizations and groups. For more than 20 years, Survival has been focused on changing and improving policies and practices that support people with disabilities of all ages to be full participants in community life.

  • When Wisconsin begins to reopen, county public health agencies and local communities will be on the forefront of local planning and guidance on how businesses and services can safely resume, as well as monitoring COVID-19 cases and conducting contact tracing.
  • Local stakeholder committees should include representation from the disability community to help ensure that community plans are inclusive of the needs of community members with a disability.
  • Advocates for vulnerable populations and service providers who offer home and community-based services should be directly consulted in local planning efforts. Read More

After Safer At Home Ends, Specific Steps Needed to Protect People with Disabilities and Older Adults in Wisconsin

As Wisconsin considers when and how to re-open businesses and state services, Survival Coalition urges strong state and local actions to protect high-risk populations and public health.

COVID-19 is particularly dangerous to people with disabilities, older adults, and people with chronic conditions. In Wisconsin, 36.5% of adults (1,612,619 people) are at high risk of serious illness or death if infected by COVID-19. Those who reside or receive services in congregate settings are at extreme risk. Read full document