Not Special Needs, Human Needs: Putting a Face on Medicaid Cuts

World Down Syndrom Day Logo

Today is World Down Syndrome Day, which helps raise awareness of what Down syndrome is, what it means to have Down syndrome, and how people with Down syndrome play a vital role in our lives and communities.

This year’s theme for World Down Syndrome Day is “Not special needs, just human needs.”

The theme says that people with Down syndrome and other disabilities have the same basic needs as people without disabilities.

They may require different types of support to meet those needs, but they have the same rights to education, jobs, opportunities, friendship and love that everyone else does.

People like Chris Grimm, who receives services from Mosaic in Omaha.

Janey, Chris’s mother, remembers being told by a special education teacher that they wouldn’t provide speech therapy for Chris because that would be a “waste of taxpayer dollars.”

It wasn’t until Chris received funding from Medicaid as an adult and started attending one of Mosaic’s day programs that he was able to prove that teacher wrong. Since coming to Mosaic as a young adult in 1999, Chris has learned to express himself in many ways, including limited verbal speech.

This support has helped Chris grow from a shy young man to a vibrant, engaging personality. He works part-time and loves to travel, dance and be around people.

Unlike Chris’s special education teacher, we believe that the services he gets from Medicaid aren’t a waste, but an investment in his future.

It’s especially important to share this message as congressional leadership tries to pass the American Health Care Act. This legislation would decimate Medicaid, which funds the services that people with disabilities, including people with Down syndrome, rely on to meet their needs.

Chris’s life and the support he gets from Medicaid matters.

We hope you will join us in affirming the value that people like Chris bring to our communities and stand up for their right to lead the best life possible by telling Congress to vote no to the American Health Care Act.

It’s the right thing to do. Sign up for Mosaic Allied Voices to advocate for funding people like Chris.

You can hear Chris’s story, told with his mother’s support, in the video below.

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