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President's Budget Reveals Broken Promises and Wrong Priorities

Statement of the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities
on the President's FY06 Budget Proposal

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(Washington, DC) - During his first month in office, President George W. Bush said to Americans with disabilities, "Wherever any barrier stands between you and the full rights and dignity of citizenship, we must work to remove it, in the name of simple decency and simple justice."

The administration's fiscal year 2006 budget breaks the promise of full citizenship. President Bush's budget and tax policy, emphasizing wealth over opportunity, simply fails to match his rhetoric.

"At a time when America is engaged in a fight for freedom and liberty throughout the world, the President's budget proposal would jeopardize the freedom, liberties, well-being, and very lives of people with disabilities in our own country," said Curt Decker, Chair of the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities.

The services and supports targeted by the Bush administration enable millions of Americans with disabilities to learn, work, pay taxes, live in their communities, and make significant contributions to our society.

Among the key federal programs targeted for elimination, cutbacks, or freezes in funding include:

  • Broken Promise: Medicaid

    Breaking a 40-year promise to advance the health of our nation's most vulnerable citizens, the administration proposes the elimination of $60 billion over ten years. The administration's position moves Medicaid funding closer to block grants to states, placing the health and well being of children and adults with disabilities at severe risk.

  • Broken Promise: Housing

    The administration's budget proposal cuts the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Section 811 assisted housing program by 50% and completely eliminates HUD's 30-year pledge to produce accessible supportive housing for people with disabilities.

  • Broken Promise: Employment

    Breaking one of the first promises of his presidency, the Bush administration's budget eliminates major employment programs at the Department of Education and significantly cuts funding for a Department of Labor employment program solely dedicated to people with disabilities.

  • Broken Promise: Education

    Breaking the President's pledge to leave no child behind, the administration seeks only 50% of authorized funds to help schools and states implement the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

The President's fiscal year 2006 budget reveals broken promises and wrong priorities. The Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities urges the U.S. Congress to reject the administration's budget cuts and to reaffirm the promise of full citizenship for America's citizens with disabilities.

The Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities is a coalition of over 100 national consumer, provider, and advocacy organizations working together to advocate for national public policy that ensures the self determination, independence, empowerment, integration, and inclusion of the 54 million children and adults with disabilities living in the United States.

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