Resolution on Full Funding of Vocational Rehabilitation Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired

Resolution on Full Funding of Vocational Rehabilitation Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired

WHEREAS states across the country are experiencing historic downturns in revenue (for example, Virginia, for the first time in recent history, has seen diminishing revenues in two consecutive years), and they are finding it necessary to cut expenses wherever possible;

AND WHEREAS the federal government is seeking to reduce the deficit and is also cutting expenses to many of its services;

AND WHEREAS ARRA funding of programs to put people, including blind and visually impaired job seekers, to work is scheduled to end this year;

AND WHEREAS vocational rehabilitation services to disabled citizens including blind and visually impaired are jointly funded by state (21.3%) and federal (78.7%)monies, but the federal contribution is based on the state’s contribution;

AND WHEREAS more demands are being put on the rehabilitation system by armed service veterans and elder people living to ages where sight disorders are prevalent;

AND WHEREAS shortfalls in revenue result in waiting lists for essential support for citizens to live independent, fulfilling lives in their communities and work at jobs commensurate with their knowledge, education, and experience;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED …, that this organization urge Congress and the Rehabilitation Services Administration work with states to ensure that rehabilitation services continue to every eligible citizen without delay caused by lack of funding;

AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that ACB Officers, Directors, Staff, Affiliates, and Chapters urge Congress to maintain and increase funding to state rehabilitation programs so that disabled, and especially blind and visually impaired, citizens are fully prepared for jobs commensurate with their knowledge, education, and experience;

AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that ACB Officers, Directors, Staff, and the Rehabilitation Issues Task Force work with affiliates to maintain and increase state funding to ensure full federal fund “draw down”, and therefore ensure blind and visually impaired citizens are well prepared for the workforce of tomorrow.