At CCDC, our motto is, “Nothing about us without us, ever,” meaning decisions that impact people with disabilities must never be made without including the perspectives of people with disabilities. This is why CCDC advocates for disability rights and equity in all three branches of government. Our staff and community members play active roles in deciding which laws and policies should be in place as well as how those laws and policies should be implemented, regulated, and enforced. We also work at all three levels of government – local, state, and federal – though the bulk of our work is at the state level.
Our advocacy in the legislative branch
From January until May each year during our state’s legislative session, CCDC staff and our volunteer lobbyists have a robust presence in Colorado’s lawmaking processes. We propose our own bills, and we read others’ proposed laws each legislative session. We actively champion some bills, push for amendment of some, and urge the defeat of others, depending on how they could impact Colorado’s disability community. We also monitor any bill that has potential to affect us.
When the legislature is not in session, our work continues. Our staff and volunteer lobbyists have year-round relationships with many state lawmakers so we can provide them with ongoing information and education about our community’s needs.
We welcome anyone invested in disability rights to join us in our legislative advocacy! Whether you are brand new to this kind of work or a seasoned advocate, we have a range of opportunities for engagement that will suit your interests and availability. Contact us today at email@example.com to get involved! Feel free to check out our Take Action page as well for other opportunities with CCDC!
Our advocacy in the executive branch
Once laws are passed in the legislative branch, they are implemented – or executed – by the executive branch. Our state’s agencies and departments that oversee public programs like Medicaid, for example, are part of the executive branch. These agencies and departments are also the structures that develop the policies, rules, and regulations governing how public programs are accessed and administered.
Because many people with disabilities receive services through state-run public programs, it is crucial that we continue to play key roles in how these programs are administered. Our staff and volunteer advocates monitor and influence the decision-making processes for multiple programs. We attend agency meetings, serve on relevant committees and boards, and give feedback consistently to these agencies.
If you’d like to help us influence policy that ensures disabled Coloradans have access to the programs and services they need, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also check out the many different state committees and boards we can help you get involved with using this directory.
Our advocacy in the judicial branch
The judicial branch of our government enforces the laws put into place by the legislative branch. CCDC has a small legal team that allows us to advocate for people with disabilities if their civil rights are violated under the Americans with Disabilities Act or other civil rights statutes as they relate to disabilities. Learn more about our work in this area here.