Fair Shake Network
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. 
Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." 

-- Margaret Mead

To Change the text size hold down your

Ctrl key and press your - or + key or use the

scroll on your mouse.

2018 Candidate Answers


Stephen Baldwin

(D) Greenbrier, District 10


Disability Rights

1. What initiatives would you undertake to ensure the protection of the Civil Rights of West Virginians with disabilities?

Make it an issue.  Protection of civil rights is not often an afterthought in Charleston, much less a priority.  It must be a lens to view all issues.


2. How will you ensure West Virginia state entities and businesses are in compliance with the American with Disabilities Act to prevent discrimination against West Virginians with disabilities?

I’ve fought these who are not locally and will continue to do so for the benefit of my neighbors.

3. Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act covers all activities of State and Local Governments. The Act states that:

  • No qualified individual with a disability shall, on the basis of disability, be excluded from participation in or be denied the benefits of the services, programs, or activities of a public entity, or be subjected to discrimination by any public entity.
  • A public entity shall administer services, programs, and activities in the most integrated setting appropriate to the needs of qualified individuals with disabilities.  (a provision upheld by the Olmstead Decision of the US Supreme Court)
  • A public entity that employs 50 or more persons shall designate at least one employee to coordinate its efforts to comply with and carry out its responsibilities under this part, including any investigation of any complaint communicated to it alleging its noncompliance with this part or alleging any actions that would be prohibited by this part.

How can West Virginia best uphold the Olmstead US Supreme Court decision and comply with the most integrated setting provision in Title II of the Act?

Implement the WV Olmstead Plan.

Medicaid

4. Do you support Medicaid Expansion under the Affordable Care Act in West Virginia?  Why?

Yes, because we can help more people

5. Do you support funding the Medicaid Waivers sufficiently to eliminate the waiting lists and make them accessible to those who need them? Why?

Yes, because folks on the waiting list has legitimate needs as well.


 Community Services

6What strategies will you use to ensure every West Virginian with a disability has access to a Center for Independent Living?

They must be properly funded.


7. How will you maximize West Virginia’s access to federal funding to improve and sustain services and supports for people with disabilities?Leverage relationships with our federal reps.

8. How will you ensure FEMA funding received by West Virginia is used to meet the specific needs of survivors with disabilities following a disaster?

I will hold WVHSEM accountable to it.


Transportation

9. Transportation in West Virginia, especially in rural areas is a problem for anyone who doesn’t own a vehicle.  However, due to the lack of accessible transportation it is an even bigger issue for people with disabilities.  Transportation is critical to the ability of an individual to work, live, and fully participate in his/her community.

What will you do to improve access to transportation statewide for all West Virginians, including people with disabilities?

We have to be willing to pay for it. I am.

Education

10.  A. How will you make sure all schools are aware of and access all transition services available for youth with disabilities?

       B. How will you enforce existing laws ensuring access to a Free and Appropriate Public Education for all youth with disabilities and ensure local school systems understand and comply with their responsibilities?

A. All superintendence’s should be. If they’re not, I’ll call them myself or call them before the education comm.

B. The IED plan is sound but it must be followed in order to work. That  is the key

11. How will you ensure the existence of post-secondary education/training, services, and supports that facilitate all youth with disabilities becoming working, productive citizens?

Partnerships, partnerships, partnerships.


12. Although the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) has been federal law since 1975, many students with disabilities are still segregated, bused to a single school in the county, or otherwise excluded from the education in the “least restrictive environment” provision of IDEA. The integration of students with disabilities into general education classrooms and activities with typical students has been shown to increase acceptance, expectations, and inclusion and to reduce fear, misunderstanding, and bullying.  What steps will you take to increase integration of all students with disabilities in schools throughout West Virginia?

We have to show the education community that it works. We must then be willing to pay for appropriate staffing.


Employment

13. 71.3% of working age West Virginians with disabilities are not in the workforce. What steps will you take to change that?  How will you ensure all working West Virginians with disabilities are paid at least minimum wage and eliminate sub-minimum wage?

Job Squad counselors can bridge the gap for us. We also need to tell the  success stories of folks like Gateway Industries so businesses see that it  works.