Rep. Beatty Bipartisan Bill Supports Stroke Survivors

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Congresswoman Joyce Beatty (OH-03), who serves as co-chair of the Congressional Heart and Stroke Coalition,reintroduced the Return to Work Awareness Act of 2017, H.R. 1128, a bill to improve the employability of individuals affected by stroke, heart attack or other serious health issues. The Return to Work Awareness Act encourages the U.S. Department of Labor’s Job Accommodation Network to promote awareness among individuals and potential employers of the resources and accommodations available to help get more Americans who have experienced a debilitating health condition get back into the workplace.

“As a stroke survivor, I know all too well the trials of the long road to recovery. To me, that journey does not end at physical therapy, but rather continues into the return to work,” Beatty said. “However, still today many Americans find it extremely difficult to return to the workforce. My bill will help fill that void by making the transition to employment a greater success for the tens of millions of Americans who have had a stroke, heart attack or other debilitating medical conditions.”

First introduced in the 113th Congress, the Return to Work Awareness Act has the support of a bipartisan group of Members of Congress, including lead Republican co-sponsor and fellow Coalition Co-Chair Congressman Chris Smith (NJ-04).

The Act is supported by the National Stroke Association.

“The reality is that over half of all stroke survivors are able to return to work within six months of having a stroke,” said Robyn Moore, CEO of the National Stroke Association. “The biggest obstacle is not even the stroke but that stroke survivors simply do not always have access to the support and resources they need to return to work. We applaud Rep. Beatty’s commitment to ensuring that all Americans have access to the tools they need to return to living meaningful and impactful lives after stroke.”

The Act has broad bipartisan support in Congress as well as the support of the American Heart Association.

“As co-chair of the Heart and Stroke Caucus, I’m pleased to co-sponsor legislation empowering stroke survivors and ensuring they are able to bring their talents and unique backgrounds back to the workforce as quickly as possible,” Congressman Smith said.