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Past Events

Shabbat Dinner with Neil and Denise Jacobson

Participants enjoyed a warm communal Shabbat experience via Zoom with Neil and Denise Jacobson. These pioneers of the disability rights movement also were among the first voices in Jewish Inclusion, and we at RespectAbility are privileged to have Neil on our board. They welcomed an open discussion on their 50 years of disability rights leadership, including the part of their journey chronicled in the recent masterpiece documentary Crip Camp, now available on Netflix, which we encourage everyone to watch for an introduction to the Jacobsons and to the disability rights movement.

L-R: Neil Jacobson, David Jacobson and Denise Jacobson smiling together. David has his arms around Neil and Denise. Text: Shabbat with Neil and Denise Jacobson

Training: “How to Recruit, Accommodate and Promote Jewish Leaders with Disabilities”

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From Itzhak Pearlman to Marlee Matlin, we all know that there are tremendously talented Jews with disabilities, and that they can make our organizations stronger in all aspects of our mission, including inclusion. Watch this webinar if you want to learn how to attract amazing Jews with disabilities to your volunteer team, your boards, and maybe even your staff!

Panelists Include

  • Moderator: Vivian Bass – RespectAbility Board Member Executive Committee and Chair of the Board of Trustees of Jewish Women International (JWI)
  • Lori Golden – Ernst & Young LLP
  • Lee Chernotsky – ROSIE’S Foundation

[continue reading…]

AAPC Webinar: The Swing Voter Bloc You Might Be Overlooking

Every vote counts and persuading swing voters to support your candidate or cause can be key for successful campaigns. There’s one swing voter bloc that you might be missing though: voters with disabilities. With over 19 million registered voters, you’ve likely interacted with this community without even realizing it. Join us for this educational seminar to learn more about this voter bloc. [continue reading…]

Virtual Gathering: Schmooze with the Jews!

This gathering, done over Zoom and largely unstructured, had one simple goal: for Jews who are socially distancing to be able to connect, relax and share stories on how they are surviving the “new normal.” It was a laid-back way to connect to new people or old friends.

Inclusion in Children and Family Content: Representation of Women and Girls with Disabilities

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With one-in-five people having a disability in the U.S. today, the lack of representation – just 3.1 percent on screen and even less in children’s television (less than one percent) – means that millions of people are unable to see themselves in media today. RespectAbility has been honored to play a part in changing this, including consulting on an array of films and TV shows, including the Netflix series The Healing Powers of Dude and The Disney Channel’s Bunk’D.

We discussed the importance of inclusion in children and family media with:

  • Sophie Kim, Actress, The Healing Powers of Dude
  • Shaylee Mansfield, Actress, Disney+ film Noelle, The Disney Channel TV show Bunk’D and upcoming Netflix feature film Feel the Beat
  • Erica Spates, Executive Producer and Writer, The Healing Powers of Dude
  • Lachi, Award-Nominated Recording Artist and Voice-Over Actress
  • Bethany Johnson, Screenwriter and Actress
  • Moderated by Debbie Fink, Director of Community Outreach and Impact, RespectAbility
  • Q&A facilitated by Lauren Appelbaum, Vice President, Communications, RespectAbility

[continue reading…]

Inclusion in Preschool Media: Importance of Disability Representation

Examples of Best Practice in Disability Inclusion in Preschool Content

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With one-in-five people having a disability in the U.S. today, the lack of representation – just 3.1 percent on screen and even less in children’s television (less than one percent) – means that millions of people are unable to see themselves in media today. In the first part of a two-part series examining representation in children’s media, we take a look at preschool content – and examples of best practice.

How are studios and production companies are taking concrete steps to further inclusion? We discussed the importance of disability inclusion in preschool media with:

  • Rachel Kalban, Vice President, Research and Curriculum at 9 Story Media Group
  • Diana Romero, Award-Winning Filmmaker and RespectAbility L.A. Lab 2020 Participant
  • Nava R. Silton, Ph.D., Developmental Psychologist who has worked at Nickelodeon, Sesame Workshop and Mediakidz
  • Krista Tucker, Series Developer, Co-Producer and Story Editor, Disney Junior’s Fancy Nancy
  • Moderated by Lauren Appelbaum, Vice President, Communications, RespectAbility

[continue reading…]

Ensuring Authentic Representation of Black Disabled People in the Entertainment Industry

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Watch webinar recording on YouTube with open captions and ASL interpreter

The protests taking place across America have illuminated the impact of racism on society. We must use this moment to recognize the pain of Black Americans and work together on fostering an environment of empathy and understanding. RespectAbility is committed to supporting our partners who are working tirelessly to dismantle systematic and structural racism to ensure that every citizen has an opportunity to move the country forward and live out their true potential.

Authentic representation of marginalized populations on screen is vitally important as what people view on screen influences how they act in real-life. Therefore we invite you to learn from Black individuals with disabilities who are working to change this perception in the entertainment industry. [continue reading…]

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