Archive for January, 2014

DRW Quoted in Green Bay Press-Gazette Article Re: Competitive Wage Employment

The Green Bay Press-Gazette quotes DRW regarding new federal guidance that encourages Wisconsin to increase competitive wage employment in the community for persons with disabilities.

“Far too many people with disabilities are employed or living in segregated communities,” said Lisa Pugh, public policy coordinator for Disability Rights Wisconsin, a nonprofit that advocates for people with disabilities. “Our organization supports the idea that everyone has the capacity to work . . . Agencies need to do a better job of helping developmentally disabled workers find and keep jobs in the general workforce.”

Read the full article here:

Federal Government Requires State to Take Closer Look at Disabled Workers.

DRW’s Lisa Pugh Weighs in on Latest Attempt to Pass Special Needs Vouchers

Public Policy Coordinator Lisa Pugh spoke to Milwaukee Public Radio about the attempt to reintroduce special needs vouchers in Wisconsin.

Click this link to listen: Lawmakers Take Another Stab at Special Needs Vouchers.

DRW Milwaukee Office Director Barbara Beckert Discusses Mental Health Services Bills

Barbara Beckert was interviewed on Milwaukee Public Radio about bills just approved by the legislature to increase community mental health services in Wisconsin.

Click the link to listen to the interview: Wisconsin Legislators Agree to Boost Mental Health Services.

Governor Walker Proposes Initiative to Assist People with Disabilities in Finding Meaningful Work

In his State of the State address last night, Governor Walker declared 2014 “the Year of the Better Bottom Line” and highlighted several Wisconsin workers with disabilities. His initiative aims to assist people with disabilities to find work and to encourage employers to hire people with disabilities.

Fewer than 19% of people with disabilities have jobs, compared to more than 68% of people without disabilities, according to federal statistics.

“Make no mistake, ‘A Better Bottom Line’ is not about charity,” Walker said of his initiative. “…We are looking for ways to help employers hire people who will add value to their organizations.”

Disability Rights Wisconsin and partner agencies the Board for People with Developmental Disabilities and People First Wisconsin welcomed the Governor’s initiative: Disability Advocates Respond to State of the State – 5-40.

The three agencies also put together the following fact sheet with statistics about workers with disabilities in Wisconsin: People with Disabilities – Ready Willing and Able to Work 1-22-14.

Click the link below to read media coverage of the initiative:


Milwaukee County Must Take Immediate Action to Ensure Patient Safety

DRW re-emphasizes its recommendations to improve conditions at the Milwaukee Mental Health Complex.


Click here to read the rest of Milwaukee County Must Take Immediate Action to Ensure Patient Safety »

DRW Investigation of Milwaukee County Behavioral Health Division and Recommendations

Disability Rights Wisconsin has monitored and reported on the conditions and treatment of individuals at the Milwaukee Mental Health Complex and Milwaukee County’s Behavioral Health Division for many years. This week the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel highlighted the work of DRW including an expert report and recommendations made earlier in the year. “Poor Care Called Factor in Four Deaths at Mental Health Complex”.

Click here to read the rest of DRW Investigation of Milwaukee County Behavioral Health Division and Recommendations »

January 17 Event to Celebrate Progress in Bringing Family Care to NE Wisconsin

The Survival Coalition of Wisconsin Disability Organizations, AARP-Wisconsin and Options for Independent Living, Inc. today hosted a press conference celebrating bi-partisan work to bring Family Care to Northeast Wisconsin. Aging and disability advocates from the region shared their stories and asked Governor Walker for his support to make sure people can get the supports they need and bring fairness to area taxpayers.

Read the press release here: Press Release – Jan 17 Event to Celebrate Progress in Bringing Family Care to NE WI – for website.

Read about the bill here: Senator Cowles introduces Bi-Partisan Family Care legislation.

Survival Coalition to Host Green Bay Press Event to Celebrate Bi-Partisan Work to Bring Family Care to NE Wisconsin

On Friday, January 17 the Survival Coalition hosts a press event in Green Bay to applaud area legislators for their bi-partisan work to help bring Family Care to the region.

Read the Media Advisory about the Jan. 17 event here:
Media Advisory – Jan 17 Event to Celebrate Progress in Bringing Family Care to NE WI – UPDATE

Read Senator Cowles’ bill here:
Senator Cowles Family Care Expansion bill – distributed 1-9-14.

Read Senator Cowles’ co-sponsorship request letter to legislators:
Senator Cowles Co-Sponsorship Letter – Family Care Expansion bill 1-9-14.

Learn more about Jessica Nell’s story as a person with a disability living in the Northeast region of Wisconsin: Jessica Nell Editorial on NE Family Care Expansion.