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On ADA Anniversary, 19 People with Disabilities Slaughtered by Murderer Who Wanted to Eliminate All People with Disabilities

Rockville, July 26 – In what is being billed as Japan’s worst mass murder since World War II, at least 19 were killed and another 26 seriously injured.

The attack occurred at Tsukui Yamayuri En centre, a care center for people with disabilities.

Satoshi Uematsu, a former employee at the center, is the prime suspect after surrendering and saying “I did it.”

Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun reported that the suspect told police: “I want to get rid of the disabled from this world.”

“This is a horrific attack on innocent human beings,” President Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi said. “People with disabilities around the world face significant prejudices, low expectations and outrages. But the intentional homicidal attack which slaughtered innocent people is an outrage and a tragedy. Our hearts go out to the victims and to all who loved them. We hope for a full and fast recovery for all who were also injured. The fact is, however, that all over the world people with disabilities are disproportionally victims of crime. This must stop.”

According to NTV, Uematsu is calling for euthanasia of people with disabilities.

‘My goal is a world in which, in cases where it is difficult for the severely disabled to live at home and be socially active, they can be euthanized with the consent of their guardians,’ it quoted a submitted letter.

This was one of Hitler’s goals in the Holocaust.

As the nation celebrates the 26th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Americans are able to physical get to the places they need to be. RespectAbility’s board members Tony Coelho and Steve Bartlett are two of the authors of the ADA.

Yet more needs to be done. Culture involving death of people with disabilities including the film Me Before You, add to the stigma believing these acts are good and ought to be lauded.

Meet the Author

Lauren Appelbaum

Lauren Appelbaum is the VP, Communications and Entertainment & News Media, of RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so all people with disabilities can fully participate in every aspect of community. As an individual with an acquired nonvisible disability – Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy – she works at the intersection of disability, employment, Hollywood and politics. She regularly conducts trainings on the why and how to be more inclusive and accessible for entertainment executives throughout the industry. Appelbaum partners with studios, production companies and writers’ rooms to create equitable and accessible opportunities to increase the number of people with lived disability experience throughout the overall story-telling process. These initiatives increase diverse and authentic representation of disabled people on screen, leading to systemic change in how society views and values people with disabilities. She has consulted on more than 100 TV episodes and films with A&E, Bunim-Murray Productions, NBCUniversal, Netflix, ViacomCBS, and The Walt Disney Company, among others. She represents RespectAbility on the CAA Full Story Initiative Advisory Council, Disney+ Content Advisory Council, MTV Entertainment Group Culture Code and Sundance Institute’s Allied Organization Initiative. She is the author of The Hollywood Disability Inclusion Toolkit and the creator of an innovative Lab Program for entertainment professionals with disabilities working in development, production and post-production. She is a recipient of the 2020 Roddenberry Foundation Impact Award for this Lab. To reach her, email LaurenA@RespectAbility.org.

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