Disability & Special Populations

Advocating for rights of vulnerable populations

Our Disability & Special Populations policy practice advises state programs, health insurers, providers, and consumer groups on policy development, implementation, and advocacy strategy, related to disability and education legislation, including legislative representation to Congress and the Administration.

With a deep knowledge of the policy environment, stemming from our experience working with policymakers in Congress and the Executive branch, disability advocates, unions, and industry associations, our staff employs a population –based approach to address issues that impact vulnerable populations, including  the disability and aging populations, and the providers that support them. In addition, our practice understands the need for accessible long-term services and support (LTSS/LTC), and we have worked to help individuals with disabilities and those who are aging continue to live at home and in their own communities. 
Our federal legislative advocacy in this field has included the enactment of the landmark Mental Health Parity legislation, the previous two reauthorizations of the $2 billion Ryan White CARE Act, the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act, the current reauthorization of Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), the Ticket to Work Act and the Work Investment Opportunity Act.

Areas of Focus

Our policy advisors and attorneys employ a population-based approach in addressing issues that affect vulnerable populations, including policy development and regulatory issues pertaining to:
  • Medicaid Managed Care
  • Long Term Services and Supports
  • Disability Employment issues
  • Special Education and Early Childhood issues
  • Mental Health, including Alcohol and Substance Use Disorders

Key Contacts


  • Advised leading commercial insurers to assess, strategize and advance the implementation of Medicaid managed care with vulnerable populations.
  • Provided education policy development and guidance related to the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and mental health in schools, including the interface of education and Medicaid, to the nation’s largest teachers’ union. 
  • Worked for disability non-profit organizations, taking leadership roles in the disability community in the areas of health, education, employment, veterans affairs issues, transportation, and appropriations.
  • Represented a national coalition focused on long-term care financing and program development.
  • Advised a leading pharmaceutical manufacturer focused on the care and treatment of individuals with HIV/AIDs, and on policy and strategies related to the evolution of this disease and ending the epidemic.
  • Advocated for a leading trade organization around outreach and advocacy to engage consumer groups.
  • Worked with an allied health non-profit concerned with reimbursement issues and building out their consumer marketplace.
  • Represented an entrepreneurial autism program for students, ages 18-26 years old, focused on transition from school to adult life.
  • Assisted a company in the design of an app related to parent training and parent communication for children with autism.