The tenants council represents tenants and provides peer support and leadership skills, said Abe Schuchman, executive director of Housing Unlimited. Rather than just signing on the dotted line of a lease, residents get several hours of assistance from the council.
With all the help it provides, Housing Unlimited expects its tenants to be responsible. "We feel very strongly that that's the highest form of respect you can pay someone," Schuchman said.
The Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services screens clients to determine their eligibility for the program, Schuchman said. Potential tenants currently live with aging parents, or are in transitional homeless facilities such as Bethesda House or supervised housing such as St. Luke's House.
Housing Unlimited has so far developed homes for 73 tenants and has almost 200 people on its waiting list, he said. The organization fully furnishes the homes with donated furniture and makes sure that care has gone into making them look attractive.
"When you convey that kind of respect to people, it comes right back at you," Schuchman said."
"Rockville Woman Crowned Ms. Wheelchair America "
The Texas Republican Party supports an amendment to the ADA to exclude people with mental disabilities, others
Targeting People with Disabilities During an Election Year
(August 3, 2004) Your action is urgently needed to contact President Bush and the Texas Republican Party and tell them to reverse their call for an amendment to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) which would eliminate protections for millions of citizens with disabilities.
The platform politicizes the ADA, a nonpartisan law, by trying to associate it with hot button issues and seeking to “exclude” categories that are NOT covered by the ADA such as “homosexual practices” and “current illegal substance abuse.”
Furthermore, the platform goes after those that are currently the most disenfranchised citizens in our country – children with learning and behavioral disabilities, individuals with HIV, and those with mental disabilities. (And of course it's not as though Congress hadn't already thought about coverage of people with mental disabilities and infectious diseases when they passed the ADA – at the time there were proposed amendments to exclude people with mental disabilities & HIV that were soundly defeated.)
Page 14 of the 2004 Texas State Republican Party Platform reads:
Americans with Disabilities Act – The Party supports amendment of the Americans with Disabilities Act to exclude from its definition those persons with infectious diseases, substance addiction, learning disabilities, behavior disorders, homosexual practices and mental stress, thereby reducing abuse of the Act.
The entire document is available online in PDF at: http://www.texasgop.org/library/RPTPlatform2004.pdf
What You Can Do:
- Use the information below to contact President Bush (whose own father signed the ADA into law), the Platform Committee Chair, and the Republican Party of Texas.
- Tell them to take this divisive and bigoted proposal out of the Texas Republican Party Platform!
- With the ADA being weakened in the courts, with growing waiting lists for mental health services, and with millions of Americans with disabilities needlessly forced to live in institutions, ask them why they are targeting some of America’s most disenfranchised citizens during this election year…
President George Bush
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, US 20500
Phone: (202) 456-1414
Fax: (202) 456-2461
Mr. Kirk Overbey, Chair of Platform Committee
6306 Leatherwood Cove
Austin, Texas 78759
Republican Party of Texas
900 Congress, Suite 300 Austin, Texas 78701
ADA Watch is a project of the National Coalition for Disability Rights, an alliance of hundreds of disability, civil rights, and social justice organizations united to defend and promote the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the human rights of children and adults with physical, mental, cognitive and developmental disabilities.