By Dan Whiting
Throughout the year, the NFXF remains involved in advocacy efforts for Fragile X families and all of those living with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Much of our work relies on strong partnerships with like-minded groups because we can accomplish so much more working together.
But all of our advocacy efforts hinge on your involvement because hearing from those most affected, who live in their Congressional districts, is THE TOP way to make things happen in Congress.
Several years ago, NFXF advocates joined forces with others and were able to enact ABLE accounts, which are tax-advantaged savings accounts for disabled individuals. Thank you to all of you who helped make them a reality. Since then, you have successfully pushed for changes to increase their flexibility, and in 2021 we joined in an effort to make them even more flexible and valuable for individuals.
One key advantage of ABLE accounts is that they allow individuals to do some work — a key part of their mental health — while still being eligible for means-tested programs like Medicaid.
The ABLE Employment Flexibility Act (H.R. 4672) permits employers to contribute to an employee’s ABLE account instead of a 401(k) — including an employer’s match. By saving it in the ABLE account it will not adversely affect most means-tested federal benefits.
Not only is this beneficial to those living with disabilities who aren’t able to work full-time, but it also gives employers striving to recruit, hire, train, and retain people with disabilities additional flexibility.