To advance policies that support people with Parkinson’s disease and their loved ones, a community approach to advocacy is essential.
When it comes to policy and advocacy matters, it's critical that the Parkinson's community speaks with one voice. For this reason, The Michael J. Fox Foundation (MJFF) created the Unified Parkinson’s Advocacy Council (UPAC). Comprising representatives from state, regional and national Parkinson's organizations, the UPAC works with community members to gather information on the priorities of people with Parkinson's and their families, helping to ensure the needs of the broader Parkinson’s population are represented in MJFF’s public policy efforts. The UPAC sends letters to policymakers when relevant bills or federal rules are being debated and encourages Parkinson's constituencies across the country to advocate.
The UPAC approach follows naturally from the work of the Parkinson’s Action Network (PAN). From 1991 to 2016, PAN served as the unified voice of the Parkinson’s community on public policy and advocacy issues. PAN represented patients and loved ones on Capitol Hill and worked, with input from other Parkinson’s organizations, to positively impact research and health care policy. In June 2016, PAN closed its doors and transitioned key staff and programs to MJFF.
UPAC members include: