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Most Recent DRW in the Media

DRW joins DD Board and Wisconsin FACETS in Op Ed opposing Special Ed Vouchers

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel published an Op-Ed in its May 24th edition in which DRW is joined by the Board on People with Developmental Disabilities and Wisconsin FACETS explaining why all three disability organizations oppose Special Education vouchers.

Click here to view the Op-Ed on the Journal Sentinel website.

DRW participates in Appellate Court case stopping Mental Health commitment of individuals with Alzheimer’s disease

DRW submitted an Amicus brief in the Appellate Court in Helen E.F. v. Fond du Lac County, advocating against the inclusion of individuals with only a diagnosis Alzheimer’s disease or other types of dementia “with behaviors” as subject to commitment under the state law goverening involuntary mental health commitments (Chapter 51). The court agreed with this position, holding that Alzheimer’s disease is not a qualifying mental illness for the purposes of comminment standards and people with only a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or similar types of dementia are not the proper subjects for treatment under Chapter 51. This case could have far reaching implications for nursing homes and other residential placements which account for the majority of emergency detentions initiated against Alzheimer’s patients. Additionally, this ruling requires changes in emergency detention procedures for both law enforcement and inpatient psychiatric facilities. Fond du Lac County has 30 days to decide whether to ask the Wisconsin Supreme Court to review this decision, if it does, DRW will ask the Court to participate at that level as well. Click here to view the article:

Interview with Barbara Beckert on UWM’s Lake Effect

Barbara Beckert is the director of our Milwaukee Office. She recently spoke with Mitch Teich on UWM’s Lake Effect about the impact she believes the proposed biennial budget would have on Wisconsin’s citizens with disabilities.

Click here to listen to the interview

DRW investigates abusive special education teacher in Appleton

DRW Attorney Jeff Spitzer-Resnick is quoted in this Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article explaining how the criminal charges against an Appleton special education teacher are connected to Wisconsin’s lack of laws on seclusion and restraint use in school.

Click here to view the article on the Journal Sentinel website.

DRW and BPDD issue joint statement on revised budget repair bill

Today Disability Rights Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities issued a joint statement on the revised budget repair bill which has now passed both the Senate and Assembly.

On March 9 Senate Republicans passed a new version of the budget repair bill 18-1 without any Democrats present to vote. Republicans removed enough fiscal elements of the original bill to bypass the requirement for a quorum. Senator Dale Schultz, R-Richland Center was the only “no” vote. The Assembly passed the bill the follwoing day – March 10 – by a margin of 53-42 (1 not voting). The Assembly vote was mostly party line with 4 Republicans (Representatives Kaufert, Nerison, Spanbauer, Tranel) voting “no”.

Click here to download the joint BPDD and DRW statement

Budget repair bill could take away input from people with disabilities and their families re: Medicaid services

DRW, along with other advocacy groups, has mounted efforts to oppose the budget repair bill provisions giving the Department of Health Services broad authority to make sweeping changes to Medicaid with little public input. See the Capital Times article below which includes quote from DRW’s Public Policy Coordinator, Lisa Pugh.

Click here to read the Capital Times article

Letter to Beloit Daily News re: Sen. Judy Robson’s Role in Health Care

DRW Executive Director Lynn Breedlove, along with representatives from the Wisconsin Nurses Association and Citizen Action of Wisconsin, wrote a letter to the editor of the Beloit Daily News discussing the legacy of retiring Wisconsin State Senator Judy Robson.

Click to read the letter on the Beloit Daily News website.

Restraints in schools in the news

DRW Attorney Jeff Spitzer-Resnick comments in the Appleton Post-Crescent about the lack of Wisconsin laws on seclusion and restraint, in a case which DRW has referred to a contracted attorney.

View the full article by clicking on the following link:

DRW comments on teachers’ union

DRW Managing Attorney Jeff Spitzer-Resnick was quoted in this front page Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article about the power of Wisconsin’s teachers’ unions. View the full article by clicking on the following link:

Rice Lake office scores victory in Open Enrollment Case

DRW Rice Lake Office Director, Genie Hedlund, recently succeeded in winning an Open Enrollment appeal to the Department of Public Instruction. When the Rice Lake School District sought an injunction to stop DRW’s client from transferring schools, Genie Hedlund succeeded in court by getting the judge to agree to allow DPI’s decision to stand. In fact, due to the frivolous way in which the school district obtained a temporary restraining order to stop the DPI decision from going into effect, the judge agreed to allow DRW to seek attorney’s fees in the case. The case was reported in the Rice Lake Chronotype.