Close to 1 in 4 Americans identify as having a disability. People with disabilities are overrepresented in our criminal justice system as victims of police misconduct. They are also subject to higher rates of suspensions and expulsions from school. And they experience poverty at higher than average rates. We must not allow this kind of discrimination to continue. In the State Senate, I will fight to ensure people with disabilities have economic security and justice, access to education and comprehensive health care, and the support to live and thrive with dignity in their communities.
As we work towards an inclusive economy, we must expand social security and strengthen the program to increase benefits. We can do this by ending the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Social Security Income (SSI) backlogs for people with disabilities. We can also eliminate the outdated eligibility terms and expand the program to increase payments to people with disabilities. In addition to expanding Social Security, we must end the subminimum wage for employees with disabilities.
I will also ensure that people with disabilities have access to quality education by targeting funding towards the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, so that students have access to the support services they need to succeed. And, finally, I will fight for a Medicare for All plan that supports people with disabilities.