Able SC Advocacy
We’re at the forefront of activism and leadership on any and all issues affecting people with disabilities—issues like accessibility, public accommodations, and transportation. These are critical in achieving full inclusion in community life.
We work with local, state, and national leaders to bring about change and create opportunities. Able SC is involved in activities in the community to improve access so that people with disabilities can live independently.
Able SC promotes self-determination, because in order for individuals with disabilities to reach their destinies and access the opportunities available to them, they need the knowledge, skills, and confidence for self-advocacy. We provide consumers with the necessary support to advocate for access to services and their employment, housing, and education rights.
Persons with Disabilities Right to Parent Act:
On May 11, 2017, South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster signed House Bill 3538 which amended South Carolina Code to add a new chapter, the “Persons with Disabilities Right to Parent Act”. Able SC worked with partners including Department of Social Services (DSS) and Protection and Advocacy for People with Disabilities, Inc. to draft a bill which codified best practices for ensuring the protection of the rights of individuals with disabilities.
The law requires the DSS, law enforcement, and the family and probate courts, among others, to protect the parenting rights of people with disabilities by establishing requirements and safeguards applicable in child custody, child protection and probate guardianship proceedings to ensure that persons with disabilities are not denied the right to parent or to have custody of or visitation with a child because of a disability; and to prohibit child placing agencies and adoption service providers from denying persons with a disability the right to access services because of the person’s disability. Additionally, the law prohibits termination of parental rights solely on the basis of a disability. Prior to this law passing, South Carolina had legislation allowing disability as the sole grounds for removing and terminating parent rights, even without evidence of abuse or neglect.
South Carolina Employment First Initiative:
The South Carolina Employment First Initiative Act was first introduced by Representative Neal Collins in the South Carolina House of Representatives on April 4, 2017. During the third reading on the Senate floor, there was a significant amendment made to the original bill, which created the SC Employment First Study Committee. The Study Committee evaluated the need for further legislation that would support policies for competitive and integrated employment for individuals with disabilities. In May 2019, the Study Committee Report was released, and the Employment First Initiative Act (H.4768) was reintroduced to the Statehouse in January 2020.
Advocacy Day for Access & Independence:
Able SC is proud to help facilitate Advocacy Day for Access and Independence with over 30 partnering organizations! More information can be found on the Advocacy Day for Access & Independence site.