National Disability Institute Supports Reintroduction of ABLE Act in Congress

Legislation Vital to Helping 1 in 3 Individuals With Disabilities Living in Poverty Take Important Steps Toward Economic Self-Sufficiency

Washington, District of Columbia, UNITED STATES


WASHINGTON, Nov. 15, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The U.S. Congress took a historic step today for Americans with disabilities by reintroducing the Achieve a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act, legislation long championed by National Disability Institute as a key to providing a pathway to a better economic future for persons with disabilities and their families.

Rep. Ander Crenshaw (R-FL) in the U.S. House of Representatives and Sen. Robert Casey (D-PA) in the U.S. Senate reintroduced the legislation designed to encourage and assist individuals with disabilities and their families to set funds aside in a tax-advantaged savings account that allows the funds to be withdrawn to cover costs of health care, housing, transportation, the purchase of technology and lifelong education. The funds will supplement but not replace benefits provided through Medicaid, Social Security and private insurance, allowing families with sons or daughters with significant disabilities a means to provide for extra costs associated with every day activities and community participation.

"ABLE Accounts will level the playing field for people with disabilities and their families," said Michael Morris, National Disability Institute's Executive Director, "By providing a tax-advantaged means to provide for extra costs, the ABLE Act is a pathway to a better and more certain economic future individuals with disabilities and their families."

"National Disability Institute thanks Rep. Crenshaw and Sen. Casey for their continued, bipartisan leadership in championing this important legislation for persons with disabilities," Morris added.

As the first national organization committed exclusively to championing economic empowerment, financial education, asset development and financial stability for all persons with disabilities, National Disability Institute supports the passage of the ABLE Act and continues to promote public policy changes that encourage work, saving, and asset development for people with disabilities and that reduce dependence on public benefits. The ABLE Act was introduced originally in 2009 the 111th Congress and had more than 200 cosponsors in the House and 20 in the Senate. Time ran out before Congress moved the legislation forward.

"In these challenging economic times, the ABLE Act is modernizing disability policy and is the right response to the extra costs of living a life with a disability, related to education, health care and independent living," said Dr. Johnette Hartnett, National Disability Institute's Director of Strategic Partnerships.

National Disability Institute will join with organizations and individuals in the disability community to educate Congress about the importance of this public policy change.

About National Disability Institute

National Disability Institute (NDI) is national non-profit organization dedicated to building a better economic future for people with disabilities. The first national organization committed exclusively to championing economic empowerment, financial education, asset development and financial stability for all persons with disabilities, National Disability Institute effects change through public education, policy development, training, technical assistance and innovative initiatives such as the Real Economic Impact (REI) Tour, which brings tax and financial education for people with disabilities to more than 100 cities nationwide. Since 2005, the REI Tour has helped more than 1 million people with disabilities receive more than $1 billion in tax refunds. To learn more, visit www.realeconomicimpact.org.

Contact:

Lisa Karp

National Disability Institute

lkarp@ndi-inc.org

(202) 695-2180

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