When was the Cross Disability Advocacy Coalition
began actively seeking Partners interested in the unique
collaborative effort of the Massachusetts Developmental
Disabilities Council and the Disability Law Center in
June 2011. The first CDAC Partners meeting was held in
What is the general objective of the CDAC?
general objective is to form a coalition made up of
people from across Massachusetts who are strong self
advocates and represent people from a wide range of
differing disabilities. We want to break down the
barriers that to often keep people and organizations
with differing disabilities from working together. We
want to find the common denominators that are important
to all of us, and collectively design strategies to
effect legislation and or administrative policy that
will improve all of our lives.
Does a person have to have a disability to be a CDAC
do not. Some of our CDAC Partners are representatives
of disability organizations, and do not have a
disability themselves. Other CDAC Partners do not
represent a specific organization, but have a disability
and are active, or want to become active in the
disability community to help improve the lives and
promote full inclusion for all people with a disability.
What are examples of the activities CDAC Partners have
been actively been working on as a coalition?
Partners have been very involved in working with other
organizations and coalitions to keep the MBTA from
significantly increasing fares to people who are
disabled and use the RIDE system. We are also working
with the states Regional Transit Authorities to improve
the applications for Para transportation.
had CDAC Partners give testimony at the State House to
several committees concerning budget cuts to programs
that affect people with disabilities, and proposed
legislation that would improve the lives of people with
indorsed legislation related to improving insurance
coverage and services for people with mental illness,
and we have been supporting projects that will lead to
increasing training and employment opportunities for
people with disabilities.
sponsored seminars and workshops focusing on providing
consumers with information they need to know such as:
Disclosure when applying for a job, reasonable
accommodations in the workplace, Social Security, and
SSDI, Medicare and MA. Health and the Massachusetts
Mottle Employer program.
What is the vision of the CDAC?
Cross-Disability Advocacy Coalition will become a
strong, united voice for people with disabilities and
lived experience. The Coalition will be engaged and
form partnerships that identify common denominators and
build a powerful constituency influencing legislation
and policy change that improves the lives of our
community and ensures full inclusion.
What makes the DLC qualified to manage the CDAC?
Disability Law Center (DLC) is the Protection and
Advocacy agency for Massachusetts. DLC is a private,
non-profit organization responsible for providing
protection and advocacy for the rights of Massachusetts
residents with disabilities. DLC receives federal, state
and private funding but is not part of the state or
What is the DLC Mission?
provide legal advocacy on disability issues that promote
the fundamental rights of all people with disabilities
to participate fully and equally in the social economic
life of Massachusetts
Does the CDAC speak for people with all disabilities?
the CDAC goals is to bring the disability community
together so that we can speak with one very loud and
Are their any disabilities you won’t represent?
to encourage any organization that represents people
with any disability to become a CDAC Partner and help us
to continue to fight for our vision of full inclusion
Many people have a disability that is not obvious; does
that exclude them from becoming a CDAC Partner?
Absolutely not, many of our CDAC Partners who represent
them selves, an organization, and or a disability do not
have a disability that is visually or auditable
noticeable. If a CDAC Partner has a cognitive or
developmental delay, or a psychiatric disorder, or lived
diagnoses of mental illness, they are still considered
disabled, and therefore, encouraged to become an active
participating CDAC Partner.
How many CDAC Partners are their?
list of Active and interested Partners is always
growing. We are slowly expanding our numbers of both
individuals and organizations who represent a growing
number of disabilities as we expand our coalition and
collaboration across the state of Massachusetts.
How can I or my organization become a CDAC Partner?
need to do is to contact the CDAC coordinator, Jonathan
Gale at (617)723-8455, or send him an e-mail at