514 West Roosevelt Street, Phoenix, AZ 85003 602-258-8850

Mark Your Calendars for ACLPI’s Annual Fundraising Auction

Mark Your Calendars for ACLPI’s Annual Fundraising Auction

Our annual in-person fundraiser has been canceled due to the pandemic, but we’re excited to host an online auction with incredible items. All proceeds go directly to the Center, so we can continue to defend Arizona’s most vulnerable and underrepresented communities in 2020 and beyond. 

You won’t want to miss this opportunity to win big and support our cause.  

  • The auction will go live Sept. 18 and end Sept. 27. 
  • Participants have an opportunity to win a variety of big-ticket items, like a vacation in Loreto Bay, Mexico, known for its stunning landscape and rich history, or a stay at the enchanting Casa de San Pedro Bed and Breakfast – a Southern Arizona oasis.
  • Every dollar goes toward our work, from supporting public schools, to protecting our natural environment and defending Arizonans’ civil rights. 

Find our full selection of amazing auction items and pre-register here. Bidding starts Sept. 18! 

ACLPI Joins Rights Organizations in Filing Complaint Regarding Arizona’s Discriminatory Crisis Standards of Care Plan

ACLPI Joins Rights Organizations in Filing Complaint Regarding Arizona’s Discriminatory Crisis Standards of Care Plan

ACLPI, the Arizona Center for Disability Law (ACDL), the Arc of Arizona and the Native American Disability Law Center recently filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Office for Civil Rights. The complaint argues Arizona’s Crisis Standards of Care Plan (CSC) and its COVID-19 Addendum could lead to discrimination against people with disabilities, older residents, and individuals from communities of color.  

As COVID-19 cases continue to grow in Arizona, clear and specific protections for vulnerable and marginalized groups is needed more than ever. Moreover, the complaint alleges the CSC and Addendum is in violation of federal civil rights laws, including the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, Age Discrimination Act of 1975, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act. 

Read the full complaint here. 

The Center Supports Ability to Sign Petitions Online During Pandemic

ACLPI Supports Ability to Sign Petitions Online During Pandemic

The Center filed two “friend of the court” briefs in the Arizona Supreme Court supporting efforts to permit people to sign petitions online rather than requiring circulators to go door-to-door during the coronavirus pandemic. Danny Adelman recently explained why The Center is standing up for direct democracy in an article in the Arizona Capitol Times.

 In the first brief, we were proud to represent the Professional Fire Fighters of Arizona, an individual battalion chief, and Will Humble, the director of the Arizona Public Health Association. We explained that requiring “in person” circulation of petitions during this pandemic is a terrible policy that will only serve to increase the spread of the coronavirus.

This is especially dangerous for the thousands of fire fighters and health care workers in Arizona who are fighting to save lives but are being exposed to the coronavirus at rates higher than virtually any other profession. Even if petition circulators use gloves and masks, that only puts additional strain on supplies of PPE that our first responders need.

In our second brief, we explained that failing to allow online signatures will essentially deprive hundreds of thousands of older Arizonans of their constitutional rights to participate in the initiative process in Arizona. Our government at every level is telling older adults to self-quarantine at home and stay away from other people. Younger people are being told not to visit retirement communities, senior living centers, long term care facilities, etc.

If people follow these emphatic orders, then there will be no opportunity for older Arizonans to exercise their constitutional right to sign petitions in support of initiatives they support. We were pleased to represent the League of Women Voters of Arizona and two older Arizonans who do not want to see their entire age group frozen out of direct democracy in Arizona.

Find the full article here.

Our Fight for Clean Air Even More Pressing as Phoenix is Ranked Among Cities with Most Air Pollution

Our Fight for Clean Air Even More Pressing as Phoenix is Ranked Among Cities with Most Air Pollution

Recent statistics released by the American Lung Association put Phoenix among U.S. cities with the most air pollution. According to the report, Phoenix ranked:

  • #7 for high ozone days out of 228 metropolitan areas
  • #10 for 24-hour particle pollution out of 217 metropolitan areas
  • #7 for annual particle pollution out of 20 metropolitan areas

This news should alarm anyone who lives, works, or plays in the Valley.

Ozone and Particulate Pollution Present Serious Health Risks

Ozone is created when nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds – which are released by fossil fuels and other chemicals – are exposed to heat and sunlight. According to the association, ozone is among the most dangerous pollutants. It can lead to premature death, cause breathing problems, exacerbate existing conditions such as asthma, and is accompanied by a host of long-term exposure risks. Ozone is a primary ingredient in smog. Unfortunately, it’s one of the least-controlled pollutants in the U.S.

Particle pollution refers to a mix of minute liquid and solid particulate matter found in the air we breathe. Most are small enough to be invisible, but you might notice a haziness when there are higher levels of this type of pollution. Depending on the level of concentration, particle pollution can be very dangerous to breathe. It may trigger respiratory illness, hospitalization, and premature death. In fact, research has linked particulate pollution to increased mortality in infants, increased hospitalizations for cardiovascular disease, and more severe asthma attacks in children.

ACLPI is Known for Fighting for Clean Air

The Center has been deeply involved in issues regarding Phoenix’s notoriously poor air quality. We continually push both state and federal agencies to adhere to clean-air standards that are designed to protect the state’s residents, including groups most susceptible to pollution: those with pre-existing health conditions, young children and the elderly. We’re unafraid to demand compliance with regulations that protect Arizona’s communities.

  • We recently sued the EPA for failing to act on dangerous particulate pollution in West Pinal County, which shares a border with Maricopa County.
  • We are also asking the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to reverse the EPA’s decision with respect to numerous violations of the ozone standard in Phoenix, which the EPA is attempting to excuse on the ground they were supposedly “exceptional events” caused by a wildfire 300 miles away in San Bernardino, California.

This report from the American Lung Association illustrates how important our fight for clean air has become. But the Center is no stranger to this issue. Protecting the environment has long been one of our primary focuses. Clean air is a critical aspect of human health and, alongside other environmental factors, contributes to millions of Arizonans’ quality of life.

Learn more about our work here.  

ACLPI Discusses Wrongful Denial of Augmentative Alternative Communicative Devices for Children in KJZZ Interview

ACLPI Discusses Wrongful Denial of Augmentative Alternative Communicative Devices for Children in KJZZ Interview

ACLPI is on the frontlines of the latest battle on behalf of Arizona children with communication impairments who have been wrongfully denied medically necessary speech aids. Center attorney Anne Ronan was interviewed by KJZZ to shed light on the ongoing issue and the Center’s response.

Arizona’s Division of Developmental Disabilities denied 95% of the requests the Division received between July 1, 2019 and the end of February 2020 for Augmentative Alternative Communicative (AAC) devices. These devices are considered medically necessary for non-verbal individuals and are approved on a case-by-case basis. However, as the Center has found, these requests are arbitrarily denied using unlawful policies and procedures.

In January 2020, Ronan sent a demand to the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS) to require the Division to cease the clear violation of state and federal laws in both eligibility requirements and the approval process. Despite an aggressive response from the AHCCCS, Ronan explains that nothing has changed at the Division. Necessary equipment, repairs and training continue to be denied in violation of federal and state law.

AHCCCS gave the Division of Developmental Disabilities until May 1 to fully comply with state and federal law. The Center continues to monitor the situation and plans to respond as necessary.

Listen to the full interview here.

Find more information on this issue here and here.