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photo of Jose M. SerranoQuestionnaire response from:
Jose M. Serrano, candidate for State Senator (28th State Senate District, Bronx/Manhattan)


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Candidate Name: Jose M. Serrano

Campaign Manager: George Torres

Phone: 347-680-3757

 

Campaign Address: P. O. Box 1677, Bronx, N.Y. 10451

Email: senatorserrano@yahoo.com

State Senate District: 28

 

  1. Please describe any experience with disability you have had in your life or career.

    Recently I had surgery on my shoulder which caused me to lose use of my right arm for a matter of weeks. Being right-handed this made life very inconvenient for me as I was unable to drive, or even accomplish the simple day-to-day tasks without assistance.
     

  2. Is your campaign headquarters accessible to persons with disabilities? If you are an incumbent, is your district office accessible to persons with disabilities? If you are in private practice, is your office accessible to persons with disabilities? If not, what have you done to ensure access?

    My district office is accessible to persons with disabilities. There are no steps leading to the front door of my office. I also have a wheelchair lift in my office and appropriate fixtures in the bathroom.
     

  3. How will you incorporate people with disabilities into your campaign?

    In past campaigns, I have welcomed and encouraged persons with disabilities to join my campaign in many different capacities.
     

  4. Are you willing to hire and use flex-time and job-sharing if necessary?

    Yes.
     

  5. Seventy (70%) percent of people with disabilities of working age are unemployed at any given time, no matter how well or poorly the economy is doing. How will you use your office to advance employment opportunities for people with disabilities?

    I will work to support and promote legislation aimed at advancing employment opportunities for the differently-abled.
     

  6. What will you do to reverse the negative impact of recent decisions in Federal Courts which are undercutting the powers of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 to protect the civil rights of people with disabilities in New York State? How would you change the laws of New York State to protect the rights of its citizens with disabilities?

    I will work with my colleagues in Albany to ensure that the laws of New York State are designed to protect the rights of those affected by disabilities.
     

  7. Currently, over 130,000 people reside in nursing homes and other care facilities in New York State. In 1999, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) found in L.C. v Olmstead that individuals with disabilities have a right to live in the most integrated setting. What will you do to encourage Olmstead implementation in New York?

    I will support legislation that ensures that all nursing home and healthcare facilities are accessible and equipped to house individuals with disabilities, so that they have access to the same facilities as other New Yorkers.
     

  8. We are in the midst of a housing crisis. Accessible, affordable housing is in short supply. People with disabilities are being priced out of the market. What would you do to develop a housing policy that would lead to the development and maintenance of accessible, affordable and integrated housing stock?

    I will work to create legislation to maintain affordable housing, and support the creation of accessible, affordable and integrated housing for all.
     

  9. Timothy's Law was designed to end health insurance discrimination by enacting parity in coverage for people with biologically-based psychiatric disabilities. To address cost concerns raised by small businesses, the agreement directs the state Superintendent of Insurance to develop a methodology that would hold businesses with 50 or fewer employees harmless from any increase in insurance premiums that result from this measure. It also requires the state Insurance Department and the Office of Mental Health to conduct a two year study to determine the effectiveness and impact of mental health parity legislation in New York and other states. What would you do to help small business?

    I would support legislation that would provide tax incentives to small businesses, which provide coverage to those with biologically-based psychiatric disabilities in order to counteract any increase in premiums.
     

  10. Under Kendra's Law, a state-funded Medicaid grants program has been established to provide medications for eligible individuals with a psychiatric disability upon release or discharge from institutions. This will help eliminate some of the problems associated with the Medicaid coverage gap. Do you support Medicaid Presumptive Eligibility legislation which would eliminate the standard 45 days without coverage, and thus without access to treatment?

    Yes, I would support MPE legislation because I feel that any obstacle preventing access to healthcare should be removed.
     

  11. By passing the Help America Vote Act of 2002 the U.S. Congress has tried to ensure that people with disabilities will, by 2006, be able to cast an independent, private ballot for the first time. What will you do to ensure successful implementation HAVA?

    I will do all that I can to ensure to implementation of HAVA in the State of New York.
     

  12. Disabled children in grades K-12 are entitled to receive a "free and appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment," but there have been major problems. Most often, schools are not physically accessible and not accommodating their students' needs. What do you propose to correct this problem?

    I think that this is an enforcement issue. There needs to be more aggressive enforcement of existing laws to ensure that all our schools are accessible to those with disabilities so that they may receive the same education as all of our children.
     

  13. Despite Section 504 and the Americans with Disabilities Act, students with disabilities face problems when pursuing higher education. These statutes do not specify how students should request accommodations or assistance in asserting their rights under the law. Will you support a fully funded office of disability services on each SUNY and CUNY campus to assist students with disabilities in securing accommodations?

    Yes. I believe that this would go far in ensuring those with disabilities are able to attend the schools of their choice and will do much in facilitating their higher education.
     

  14. What is your position on expanding DRIE (Disabled Rent Increase Exemption) to be the same as SCRIE (Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption) to low-income, eligible persons with disabilities under the age of 62 on the same basis and income level (currently the SCRIE's income cap is $25,000, while DRIE's is $17,000)?

    I support expanding DRIE and raising the income cap so that there is parity between our state's seniors and disabled when it comes to rent increase exemptions.
     

  15. Do you support the extension of Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage (EPIC) to low-income persons with disabilities regardless of age? What would you do to ensure this?

    I would support any legislation that sought to expand EPIC or a version thereof to persons with disabilities regardless of age.
     

  16. What would you do to expand accessible transportation options for people with disabilities in NYS?

    I will support increased funding for programs that will expand transportation options for persons with disabiliities.
     

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For other candidates running for State Senator and State Assembly positions, go to the Questionnaires section

 

 

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