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FROM THE EDITOR'S PEN  /Hold the Champagne/  Editorial List

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Hold the Champagne
 

As reported here a few weeks ago, after many years of hard work from dedicated care advocates, the Lifespan Respite Care Act was signed by the president late last year. Unfortunately, Washington being Washington, the good fight is not yet over.  

I would like to share an important message from Jill Kagan, Chairperson of the National Respite Coalition: 

Dear SPOCS, State Respite Coalitions and Friends of Respite,

Here is your first task to get the money for the Lifespan Respite Care Act in FY08!

Senators Clinton and Warner want to send a letter to the Senate Budget Committee  signed by as many Senators as possible urging them to set aside funds in the Senate Budget Resolution for the Lifespan Respite Program. They have already sent around a "Dear Colleague" letter asking other Senators to sign onto their budget letter, but they have specifically asked us to follow up and help them get these signatures from your Senators as soon as possible.

They need the signatures by February 7, 2007, so make this call today!!

ACTION:  Contact your Senators today by calling the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 and asking for their offices. If you don't know who your Senators are, go to www.congress.org and type in your zip code. Call only your two Senate offices and ask for the Health Legislative Assistant (LA).

MESSAGE:

"Senators Clinton and Warner have sent around a "Dear Colleague" asking Senator ____________ to sign onto a letter to the Senate Budget Committee. They are asking the Budget Committee to reserve funds in the FY 08 Budget to fund the Lifespan Respite Care Act over the next five years (Total $289 million). The Act was signed into law by the President last December.

I am calling to urge Senator ____________ to sign this letter before February 7 by contacting either Senator Clinton's or Senator Warner's office.

 We have _____________family caregivers in our state who are providing $__________ in uncompensated care. (See attached table to fill in the blanks) If they don't get respite soon, they might be forced to place their loved ones in much more costly nursing homes or foster care.  Please act today."

If you have any questions or need more information, please don't hesitate to contact me today! And please circulate this message widely!!  Thanks and have a great day.

 Jill Kagan, MPH
Chair, National Respite Coalition
4016 Oxford St.
Annandale, VA 22003
703-256-9578
jbkagan@verizon.net
www.archrespite.org/nrc.htm

No rest for the weary respite warriors –yet.

Do your part. Please make a call.

 


Gary Barg
Editor-in-Chief

gary@caregiver.com