Senator Tom Harkin

Sen. Tom Harkin — Working For More Jobs

Circa 2011 Dear ABILITY readers, Since the beginning of the recession, I have heard impassioned pleas for this Congress to focus our attention on the jobs crisis in America. In September, the Census Bureau reported that nearly one in six Americans is living in poverty, a number that has increased each of the last ... Read more

Sen. Tom Harkin — A Call to Employers

Circa 2011 NO AMERICAN DREAM WITHOUT JOBS Dear ABILITY readers, As we mark the 21st anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), this landmark bipartisan legislation has played a huge role in our country. Today, the US is more accessible; people with disabilities have higher expectations of what they can achieve; and much ... Read more

Senator Harkin — Remembering Eunice Kennedy

Circa 2010 WE NEED THE EUNICE KENNEDY SHRIVER ACT Dear ABILITY readers, This summer, we are celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Despite enormous progress over the last two decades, individuals with intellectual disabilities still face challenges on many fronts. They have health problems that many physicians are reluctant to ... Read more

Harkin — A Step Toward Health Reform

Circa 2010 HEALTH REFORM MISSION STILL CRITICAL The President’s directive for health reform in his State of the Union address was clear: do not walk away. I am glad that he reaffirmed his commitment to enacting strong and comprehensive health reform this year and delivered a message the country urgently needed to hear. For ... Read more

Senator Harkin — Let’s Stop Workplace Abuses

Circa 2009 Making the Workplace Work Dear ABILITY Readers, For too long, people with disabilities have been vulnerable to exploitation in the workplace. Recently, we got a particularly shocking wake-up call. That’s when Henry’s Turkey Services in Atalissa, IA, was accused of paying employees with intellectual disabilities only $60 a month, even though they ... Read more

Senator Tom Harkin

A COURAGEOUS QUEST Elections matter! Case in point: the Christopher and Dana Reeve Paralysis Act. I introduced this bill in 2002 in an effort to advance collaborative research into paralysis and improve the quality of life for people living with paralysis and mobility impairments. Over the years, the bill passed twice in the House, ... Read more

Senator Harkin — ADA: 19 Years Of Progress

Circa 2009 ADA: 19 YEARS OF PROGRESS At the end of July, we commemorated the 19th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)—the landmark civil rights law securing the rights of people with disabilities. As chief Senate sponsor of this legislation, I remember the day it was signed into law—July 26, 1990—as one ... Read more

Senator Letter — Ben Nelson

Circa 2008 COME ON! LET’S PUT PEOPLE TO WORK Dear ABILITY Magazine Readers, As a former governor of Nebraska and a current U.S. senator, I have met many of my fellow citizens who have disabilities and who, compared to the typically able population, face staggering unemployment. Despite the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act [ADA] ... Read more

Senator Harkin — Global Disability Rights

Circa 2008 LET’S BEND TOWARDS JUSTICE Dear ABILITY Readers, I often tell people that the day the Americans with Disabilities Act passed in Congress, was the proudest day of my legislative career. This was landmark Civil Rights legislation, a long-delayed Emancipation Proclamation for millions with disabilities. It said “no” to the exclusion and discrimination ... Read more

Senator Harkin — Promoting The Wellness Act

Circa 2007 PROMOTING WELLNESS FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES ACT Dear ABILITY Readers, As many of you know, promoting the health of America’s citizens has long been one of my top priorities. In particular, I have advocated wellness and disease prevention, which requires access to health screenings and other services that keep people out of ... Read more

Senator Harkin — Embryonic Stem Cell Research

Circa 2005 EXPAND STEM CELL RESEARCH—NOW! Dear ABILITY Readers, This is an exciting time for millions of Americans who have juvenile diabetes, spinal cord injuries, Parkinson’s and other diseases and disabilities. They have new hope for treatment—and perhaps a cure—thanks to embryonic stem cell research. Last spring, the House of Representatives passed a bill— ... Read more

Senator Harkin’s Letter — Community-Based Services

Circa 2007 EXPANDING ACCESS TO COMMUNITY-BASED SERVICES Dear ABILITY Readers, As many of you know, one of my key priorities in the Senate has been to give older Americans and people with disabilities greater choices by expanding access to community-based services. I want to share with you a recent victory on that front. I ... Read more

Senator Letter — Hillary Rodham Clinton

Circa 2007 GIVING EVERY CHILD A CHANCE Dear ABILITY Magazine Readers, My passion for working on behalf of people with disabilities stems from an experience very early in my professional career when I worked for the Children’s Defense Fund. Back then, I was asked to go door to door in New Bedford, MA, to ... Read more

Senator Harkin — Setting Our People Free

Circa 2005 SETTING OUR PEOPLE FREE Dear ABILITY Readers, This year celebrates the 15th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Authoring the ADA and shepherding its passage was one of the proudest achievements of my career in Congress. When we passed the ADA, we set four great national goals for individuals with ... Read more