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Legislative Advocacy

Maureen & John at State HouseMDSC Executive Director Maureen Gallagher and
LATF member
John Anton at the U.S. Capitol

The MDSC works to address policy issues affecting people with Down syndrome.

We believe the most effective Legislative Advocacy is accomplished by individual voters bringing up the issues that matter to them with their state or federal representatives. 

To that end, the MDSC has formed a Government Affairs Committee with broad statewide representation with a stated goal of mobilizing the MDSC membership to advocate for policies and bills that will benefit people with Down syndrome.

Working in conjunction with the MDSC Executive Director and management team, the committee helps advance bills on our state and federal platforms in the following ways:

  • Ensuring that the MDSC membership is aware of our legislative priorities and understands how they can take action.
  • Drafting sample letters and advocacy materials for the MDSC membership to use.
  • Providing training opportunities for the MDSC members to gain information and skills on legislative advocacy best practices.
  • Recruiting testifiers, developing testimony and participating in hearings to advocate on behalf of bills on the MDSC's platform.
  • Organizing and participating in legislative advocacy activities such as rallies, legislative receptions, advocacy days and meetings with key legislators.

MDSC Statewide Platform

In every legislative session, the Government Affairs Committee chooses among dozens of disability-related bills. A select number of bills are chozen as top priority and support bills. They become the MDSC's statewide platform for the coming year (Pending board approval).


Top Priority bills that have passed in the last year include:

  • National Background Check
  • Real Lives

 As of this moment, we do not have the platform for upcoming bills ready. We will update accordingly when we have obtained the information.

MDSC National Platform

The MDSC adopts our federal legislative platform from our national partner, the National Down Syndrome Society. Go to our national platform page to see our/NDSS’s 2015/16 federal policy priorities.

Join/Contact the Government Affairs Committee

The committee appreciates your feedback, and we are often looking for new members. Contact us at timetospeakout@mdsc.org.

Contact Your Legislator

To find your legislator, visit the Massachusetts Legislature’s recently revamped website.