Programs to help disabled children should not be cut Print
Written by Mary C. Uhler   
Thursday, Apr. 04, 2019 -- 12:00 AM

If we’re concerned about respecting the lives of children both before and after birth, we should oppose proposed cuts to federal programs helping disabled children.

The Trump administration’s budget proposal is seeking to cut $7 billion in the 2020 education budget.

Special Olympics

One of the programs Education Secretary Betsy DeVos proposed cutting was the Special Olympics program. She asked for $17.6 to be eliminated from the program, which affects over 272,000 young people throughout the country.

I have a friend whose son participates in Special Olympics. He enjoys his involvement in this program so much, and it would be a shame if he couldn’t participate.

After condemnation of this proposal from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, President Donald Trump reversed course and announced, “I have overridden my people. We’re funding the Special Olympics.”

Other proposed cuts

The Education Department is proposing a $7 million cut to the National Technical Institute for the Deaf. Gallaudet University for the deaf and hard of hearing would see a cut in federal funding from $134 million to $121 million, and the American Printing House for the Blind will be cut from about $30 million to about $25 million.

These cuts are being proposed to “support the President’s goal of increasing support for national security and public safety without adding to the Federal budget deficit,” the budget proposal says.

There are also other proposed  budget cuts, including cutting $1 billion in after-school programs that serve low-income children, funding for arts education, and a program serving gifted students.

Budget process

The Budget Act stipulates that the House should give final approval to all spending bills by June 30, 2019. The president may then sign or veto the bills within 10 days.

So between now and then, concerned citizens should contact their congressional representatives and the president to express concern about cuts for people with disabilities and special education, in addition to other education cuts.