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Advocacy Legislative Updates - Click for more

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Advocacy - What is it? Find Your Legislator

Advocacy is a core function of the ADRC of Brown County's mission, mandated by the Federal and State authority. ADRC is charged with both advocating on behalf of older adults, adults with disabilities, and their caregivers, as well as empowering them to advocate for themselves. This webpage will help you make informed decisions by providing information from a variety of aging and disability networks, both statewide and national.

Wisconsin is Facing a Caregiver Crisis - That Must be Addressed

The above organizations released an educational piece concerning the Caregiver Crisis in Wisconsin. There are not enough caregivers to meet the need for persons who need care.

In 2016 Survival Coalition of Wisconsin Disability Organizations survey 85% of the more than 500 respondents said they canno find enough direct care workers to meet their daily needs. This means that persons can't get help to do simple tasks we take for granted like getting out of bed, bathing, dressing, making meals, eating, etc. Imagine what their day is like without this help.

Go to this Wisconsin is Facing a Caregiver Crisis link to read more.

Facts about How the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) Impacts Medicare Beneficiaries
& What Beneficiaries Could Lose if it's Changed

The ADRC has compiled a fact sheet (click the link here or in the title above to read it) to help you understand what changes could mean to persons on Medicare (beneficiaries).

Read below for information that other aging network organizations have put together that would also be helpful to you.

MISSION: The Medicare Rights Center is a national, nonprofit consumer service organization that works to ensure access to affordable health care for older and people with disabilities through counseling and advocacy, educational programs and public policy initiatives.

The Medicare Rights Center has issues a series of "Issue Briefs" that discuss the debates regarding health care and Medicare and how the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) interacts with and supports the Medicare program.

Medicare Rights Blog: Kaiser Foundation Issue Brief Provides Clarity About Medicare's Financial Outlook. Lots of information here about Medicare's financial outlook and a side by side comparison of Affordable Care Act repeal plans and how they may impact Medicare.

This Medicare Rights Center Issue Briefs link will take you to their website to read these briefs and learn more. They update them regularly.

NCOA Straight Talk for Seniors

The National Council on Aging (NCOA) is a nonprofit organization that for more than 65 years has made improving the lives of older adults their passion and mission.

Advocacy is a big part of their mission. With a new Administration and Congress expressing interest in changing policies important to seniors the organization has developed a website to help older Americans, their families, and professionals stay on top of issues involving the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Medicaid, Medicare, and the Older Americans Act (OAA).

It is a great source to help you stay informed so that you can express your wants and needs to your elected representative. Go to this link to learn more:

AARP Real Possibilities

Special AARP Report Why Medicare Matters is in response to the legislatures proposals to make changes to Medicare and the many members writing to AARP worried about what might happen to Medicare the health care program they depend on.

Robert Love, AARP Bulletin editor in chief states, "At AARP, we continue to believe passionately in this program, which has allowed our citizens to age with dignity. In this special report, we detail what the state of Medicare is today and provide what you need to know about the upcoming debate in Washington over the nation's most important health care program." It has valuable information to help you talk to your representative about how important Medicare is to you.

Other Advocacy Groups and Information


  • AARP
    Advocacy page from AARP website. Up to date news and articles of interest to seniors. Links to federal and individual state issues and on-line tools for you to use to let your legislator know how you feel.

  • Administration on Aging
    Federal agency whose mission is to develop a comprehensive, coordinated and cost-effective system of home and community-based services that helps elderly individuals maintain their health and independence in their homes and communities. News and information about elder rights, health and prevention, home and community-based long-term care and much more.

  • Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups CWAG
    The Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups CWAG is a non-profit, nonpartisan state-wide membership organization whose mission is to improve the quality of life for people of all ages through: intergenerational understanding and leadership development, public education, legal and legislative advocacy and public policy development.

  • N4a Advocacy in Action Center
    Advocates for services and resources for older adults and persons with disabilities. Information on issues, legislation, position papers and ideas. Topics include Older American's Act Reauthorization, enhancing the health and well being of older Americans, and livable communities.

Disability & Health

  • Disability Advocates Wisconsin Network DAWN
    Grassroots organization that focuses on the most important issues affecting all people with disabilities, their families, friends, and service providers. Up-to-date information on issues, practical tools to put into action, and with training resources, including video and on-line courses.

  • Disability Rights Wisconsin DRW
    A private non-profit organization that helps disabled persons of all ages. DRW helps people across Wisconsin gain access to services and opportunities through its advocacy and legal expertise.

  • Disability*Gov
    Information network of disability-related programs, services, laws and benefits. Connections resources from federal, state and local government agencies, educational institutions and non-profit organizations. New resources are added daily across 10 main subject areas – benefits, civil rights, community life, education, emergency preparedness, employment, health, housing, technology and transportation.

  • Family Voices of Wisconsin
    Family Voices of Wisconsin is a state-wide network of families who have children and youth with special health care needs and/or disabilities and those who work on their behalf. Provides information, training and leadership opportunities. Works to inform and educate health care providers and local, state and national policy makers and administrators about issues.

  • Information & Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities
    Listing: Organizations that assist persons with disabilities and their families in finding services, assistive technology, and support groups in addition to providing education and advocacy on disability related issues and so much more.

  • Kaiser Family Foundation Medicare & Medicaid Advocacy
    Non-profit foundation provides policy analysis and research on health issues. News and information about health policy and develops and runs public information campaigns.

  • National Alliance on Mental Illness NAMI
    National organization with local chapters, there is one in Brown County, WI. Provides education, information, advocacy and more. Keep up to date with legislative issues, suscribe to the NAMI Advocacy magazine.

  • Office of Disability Employment Policy Federal
    The Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) provides national leadership on disability employment. Information for employers, employees and job seekers. Advocates for employment opportunities for persons with disabilities.

  • Waisman Center
    The Waisman Center provides clinical care through 12 specialty clinics across the state through a collaborative partnership with the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinic systems. The center provides full, detailed early assessments and evaluations of children with developmental disabilities. In addition, the Waisman Center conducts research, has training opportunities for students and the surrounding communities, services for individuals and families of those with developmental disabilities, and outreach into the community.

  • WI Family Assistance Center for Education Training and Support WIFACETS

  • Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities
    Advocates on behalf of individuals with developmental disabilities, foster welcoming and inclusive communities and improve the disability services system.

  • Wisconsin Council on Physical Disabilities
    A state council created to make recommendations to state agencies on legislation, promote public awareness of and barriers to persons with disabilities and encourage development of programs and policies that prevent physical disabilities. The website provides links to citizen advocacy, civil rights and disability specific resources and services providers.

General Issues

  • Wisconsin Eye
    State-of-the-art robotic cameras in the Capitol produce gavel-to-gavel, unedited coverage of state proceedings, both live and archived video.

  • League of Women Voters WI
    A nonpartisan organization working to encourage active and informed participation in government. Information on and position papers on federal, state and local issues.

  • United States House of Representatives
    Official site of the US House of Representatives. Historical and visitor information. Current session schedule, floor proceedings, votes, bills and reports.

  • United States Senate
    Offical site of the United States Senate. History of the senate and current session information. Vistor information for those planning a visit to Washington DC.

  • Glossary of Political Economy Terms
    Ever wonder what the difference is between the National Debt and the Deficit? What about an Appropriation and a Bill? This online glossary is easy to use and will help you understand what you read and hear in the media and from politicians and friends.
    The online edition of A Glossary of Political Economy Terms by Dr. Paul M. Johnson of Auburn University.

Long Term Care

  • Long Term Care Ombudsman
    The Long Term Care ombudsman responds to complaints and problems of residents or recipients of long term care, such as care in nursing homes, community-based residential facilities, and services of the Community Options Program and managed long-term care programs. They work with all parties involved to investigate and look for solutions to problems.
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