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keyicon"My Own Key" Advocacy is about advocating for housing for people with disabilities that is  community-based, rather than in institutions, when it is in the best interest of the individual. Having your own key symbolizes control and privacy within your home, while still living in the community with family and support systems. It is about providing a choice. While some may choose to live in an institution for the services it provides, they should also be offered the choice to have housing and services in the community.

 

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TEN WAYS TO INCREASE HOUSING IN YOUR OWN AREA.

1. Adopt a My Own Key Housing Plan, requiring that 10% of publicly funded housing units, be targeted for persons with disabilities on SSI income levels.

2. Create Housing Trust Fund with set-asides for supportive housing.

3. Eliminate state and local laws that require distances between group homes and eliminate huge waiting lists for community-based services.

4. Provide rent subsidies through HUD HOME, CoC and

Section 8/Housing Vouchers fortenant-based subsidies.

5. State implementation of Medicaid expansion to allow persons with disabilities to increase income without losing Medicaid.

6. Expand use of State OSS payments for use in apartments and other community housing.

7. Ensure that public housing set asides and other federal requirements are complied with.

8. Maximize federal resources such as Money Follows the Person and Housing Choice Vouchers.

9. Ensure enforcement of Federal Fair Housing Act, ADA and Section 504 requirements.

10. Expand best practice models like "Housing First" and "ACT Team".

REMEMBER ADVOCACY CAN HAPPEN IN THE THREE BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENT:

Legislative:

  • Educating your elected officials of your local, state and federal government about changes needed in laws that can increase access to housing for persons with disabilities or eliminate barriers.
  • Drafting a bill and asking your elected official to sponsor it, in order to pass a new law.
  • Contacting your elected officials to support a bill or funding for a specific program.
  • Helping to elect persons who support your issues.

Executive:

  • Educating government agency leaders.
  • Filing an administrative agency complaint, like a Fair Housing Complaint.
  • Filing a challenge to a proposed or existing rule being proposed by a government agency.
  • Submitting comments to a proposed rule.
  • Participating in community planning processes that affect use of housing funds, such as the Consolidated Plan.
  • Filing an administrative appeal if benefits or housing is denied. 

Judicial:

  • Educating persons about their legal rights.
  • Filing a lawsuit to challenge an action or law in a court of law.
  • Defending persons being evicted.

MEMBERS ONLY: Click here to view a Sample Case Study on Advocacy in multiple branches of government. 

 

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