Our View of the Legislature: Removing Handicap

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We are not yet at the halfway point for the 2023 session, but already the legislature is making significant progress on important proposals.

The legislature is working on legislation to update the Virginia Code by replacing the words “handicap” and “handicapped” with alternative terms as appropriate in context, such as “disability” and “impairment.” The bill is a recommendation of the Virginia Disability Commission.

The Senate proposal, SB 798, from Senator Hashmi was approved by the committee on the second day of the session and has been heard and approved by the full Senate. The bill will now go to the House side to be heard in committee, but probably not until after “crossover” on February 8.

HB 1450, from Delegate Bobby Orrock, chair of the House Committee on Health, Welfare, and Institutions, has not yet been heard in committee. That committee meets next on Tuesday, January 31, maybe at 10 am. The docket for that meeting is not yet available.

To watch that committee hearing on Tuesday, you can click here then look at the list on the left and click on “now playing.”

Please let us know of any proposed constitutional amendments, legislative proposals, or budget issues that you think we should be following. Contact us at ga@dlcv.org or info@dlcv.org or by calling 1-800-552-3962 or 804-225-2042.

The disAbility Law Center of Virginia is available to educate policymakers about the potential impact of legislative proposals during this 2023 session. Our mission is to advance independence, choice, and self-determination; protect legal, human, and civil rights; and eliminate abuse, neglect, and discrimination of people with disabilities through zealous and uncompromising legal advocacy and representation.