WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.) and Mike Braun (R-Ind.) announced the founding members of the bipartisan Senate ALS Caucus: U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), John Kennedy (R-La.), Doug Jones (D-Ala.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), and Martha McSally (R-Ariz.).
“I’m excited to join Senator Braun in announcing 12 new members of the Senate ALS Caucus. It’s clear that there is a strong bipartisan, bicameral commitment among members to do all we can to help find a cure for ALS,” said Senator Coons. “Even in the face of such a debilitating disease, ALS patients and their families are inspiring us to take action. I look forward to working with my colleagues to rise to this challenge. We can and should do more to help.”
“I’m thrilled to join Senator Coons to announce 12 new bipartisan members of the first ever Senate ALS Caucus,”said Senator Braun. “There are real solutions that Congress can enact right now to help those fighting ALS get access to meaningful treatments and I look forward to working with these new members to make those solutions reality for these patients and their families.”
“ALS is a devastating illness that impacts thousands of Americans and their families,” said Senator Blumenthal.“I’m proud to join my colleagues as a founding member of the bipartisan Senate ALS Caucus as we work toward putting an end to this debilitating disease once and for all.”
“I’m pleased to join my colleagues in support of efforts and actions to find a cure for ALS,” said Senator Boozman. “It is my hope that our work will lead to improved treatments and bring hope to patients and families who have been affected by this disease.”
“I’m proud to join my colleagues in starting this Senate caucus focused on helping individuals and families battling ALS,” said Senator Durbin. “We have to maintain our bipartisan commitment to funding life-saving biomedical research that helps to find causes, treatments, and cures to the world’s most challenging diseases like ALS.”
“As brave Americans like Steve Gleason fight to improve the lives of people suffering from ALS, it’s time for Congress to join their efforts,” said Senator Kennedy. “There’s a long road to the cure, but beating this disease is a bipartisan priority that I’m proud to support.”
“My grandfather died of ALS, and I know what a terrible, debilitating disease it is,” said Senator Jones. “I am proud to partner with my colleagues in the bipartisan Senate ALS Caucus and stand ready to work with ALS patients and their families to advocate for more research, access to new treatments, and ultimately find a cure for this devastating illness.”
“As someone whose family has been touched personally by ALS, better understanding how Congress can support the ALS community has long been a priority. My hope is that this bipartisan group will work together—and alongside advocacy groups, healthcare professionals, and the families of those living with ALS—to make real and lasting change,” said Senator Murkowski. “I appreciate Senators Coons and Braun for leading this effort and look forward to continuing to raise awareness, advance policies, and improve support for those who are suffering from this awful disease.”
“During my time in Congress, I have been inspired by ALS patients and their families,” said Senator Blackburn. “Their courage and determination to face this disease and fight for therapies and a cure motivates me to work to find a way to improve their quality of life.”
“Arizonans with ALS and their families deserve to know we're fully supporting research to find a cure for this debilitating disease,” said Senator Sinema. “I’m proud to join the ALS Caucus and will continue my efforts advocating for all affected by this disease.”
“The ALS Caucus will focus efforts in the Senate to pass legislation like the ALS Disability Insurance Access Act, my bill to waive the standard five-month waiting period for those benefits for patients battling this fatal disease,” said Senator Cotton. “It’s urgent that we do all we can to support people living with ALS in Arkansas and around the country.”
“ALS is a heartbreaking diagnosis,” said Senator Whitehouse. “I’m proud to join the bipartisan Senate ALS Caucus to build on the headway we’ve made treating this disease and giving families hope for a cure. We look forward to progress on my bill to waive the five-month SSDI waiting period for ALS patients.”
“Thousands of Americans and their families are battling a devastating ALS diagnosis,” said Senator McSally. “I joined my colleagues in founding the Senate ALS Caucus so that we could partner together with ALS patients, their families, and health care professionals to find innovative treatments and hopefully, a cure for this debilitating disease.”
The bipartisan Senate ALS Caucus will bring together Senators from both sides of the aisle who share a commitment to working collaboratively to advocate on behalf of ALS patients and their families. The mission of the Senate ALS Caucus is to:Raise awareness about the difficulties faced by ALS patients and their families;Advance policies that improve the quality of life for ALS patients;Expand the network of support for those suffering from ALS; and,Advocate for investments in research that will enhance our understanding of the causes of ALS, identify effective treatments, and eventually discover a cure.
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease that destroys the body’s ability to control muscle movement. There is no effective treatment for the disease, no known cause, and currently no cure.