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#PwDsVote

#PwDsVote Questionnaire Released: Jeb Bush, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders Complete Questionnaires

Washington, Jan. 30 – RespectAbility has released its first #PwDsVote 2016 Campaign Questionnaire for people with disabilities (PwDs).

“Fully one-out-of-five voters have a disability, and 52 percent of likely voters have a loved one with a disability. There are 56 million Americans with disabilities, and we have the ability to determine who wins or loses elections,” RespectAbility President Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi said. “In the early voting states there are 357,730 people with a disability in Iowa, 166,258 PwDs in New Hampshire, 680,038 PwDs in South Carolina and 357,035 PwDs in Nevada. Our community will play a major role in the outcome of this election, and it is vital for us to know where the candidates stand on our issues.”

The questionnaire asked all of the presidential candidates on both sides of the aisle to comment on 16 disability questions. Former Sec. of State Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders filled out all of the questions and former Gov. Jeb Bush filled out almost all of the questions. While there are three candidates who answered the questions very thoroughly, they have dramatically different ideas about how to deal with the issues. It’s extremely important to read their full answers so that you can understand their important differences. Issues in the detailed questionnaire include employment, stigma, education, safety, transportation, housing, healthcare, foreign affairs and other issues. Several of the candidates did not yet take the time to fill out the questionnaire, but Dr. Ben Carson and Gov. Chris Christie filled out parts of the questionnaire.

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How You Can Make a Difference for People with Disabilities in the 2016 Presidential Campaign

Read the webinar transcript
Download the accessible PowerPoint presentation (COMING SOON)
Watch the webinar on YouTube with live embedded captions

Did you know there are 56 million Americans with disabilities?
That 56 percent of likely voters say they, a family member, or a close friend has a disability?
And the disability community spans partisanship?

The disability community has the power to swing elections. For the first time, presidential candidates on both sides of the aisle are talking about our issues.

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#PwDsVote 2016 Campaign Questionnaire

RespectAbility is asking all presidential candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. 

During this presidential campaign, we have had the pleasure of covering all the candidates and their views on disability issues. Coverage of all the candidates can be found here: www.TheRespectAbilityReport.com. We have large email lists of thousands of people in each of the early primary and caucus states who have disabilities and/or a family member with a disability. As you probably know, 20 percent of the U.S. population has a disability, coupled with all of the family members, that percentage increases exponentially to include one in every three households in America.

We are preparing a questionnaire for all presidential candidates on a variety of disability issues. The #PwDsVote Presidential Campaign Questionnaire will be electronic and thus it is vital for candidates to put their positions on their website and give us the specific links to the places you want us to share with the disability community. Candidates may choose to answer each question individually for people with disabilities (PwDs), or to mention PwDs within a larger plan (i.e., jobs, national security and crime plans) for the entire public.

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Candidates Focusing on Disability Issues, Key Voting Bloc

Image saying VOTE with O being an image of a person in a wheelchair

America has 56 million people with disabilities, comprising the largest minority group in America, and the only one that, due to an accident or illness, anyone can join at any time.

Washington, Jan. 14 – Ahead of tonight’s Republican debate, the disability community is finally being heard and paid attention to by the presidential candidates on both sides of the aisle.

In a new ad released today, Republican presidential hopeful Jeb Bush highlights his fight for the rights of people with disabilities. Last week, Secretary Hillary Clinton became the first candidate to announce an Autism plan following a week of talking about related issues including mental health parity and Alzheimer’s research. Three candidates – Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Rick Santorum – have a section on their websites dedicated to disability rights.

In the past few weeks, nearly all of the candidates on both sides of the aisle have answered questions on low employment rates, high crime rates and lack of accessibility issues while campaigning in Iowa. In comparison, during the 2012 cycle, the word “disability” was very rarely even uttered.

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People with Disabilities More Likely to be Victims of Crime & Police Brutality

African Americans with Disabilities Much Less Likely to Be Diagnosed and Receive Services

Des Moines, Iowa, Jan. 11 – As the Democratic candidates for president address the Black and Brown Forum tonight, the nation’s mayors are calling on the candidates to speak out on urban issues impacting America’s cities.

A major issue in cities across the country is violence. People with disabilities (PwDs) are twice as likely to be victims of crime than people without disabilities. In addition, they are more likely to be victims of police attacks.

“With twice as many Americans with disabilities under physical attack and repeatedly victims of police violence, we have a long way to go in America before people with disabilities can be safe, respected and have the same opportunities as everyone else. Additionally, minorities are far less likely to get the screening and services they need for early interventions that can help them succeed in jobs and in life,” said Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, president of RespectAbility.

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On the Campaign Trail with a Wheelchair

 

Justin Chappell in a wheelchair interviewing Bernie Sanders using an iPad

Justin Chappell interviewing Bernie Sanders

I’m Justin Chappell, one of The RespectAbility Report’s newest reporters. I also have Spina bifida, and, as a result, use a wheelchair. But this does not limit me. There are negative stigmas out there that discriminate against people with disabilities. But these stigmas are inaccurate and I live a very full life. Today I own my own place, am married to the love of my life, and now, on behalf of RespectAbility, I am interviewing presidential candidates!

The RespectAbility Report is a new online publication sponsored by the nonprofit disability rights and opportunity group RespectAbility. Our publisher, Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, worked at Campaigns & Elections magazine and had a newspaper column for many years. Our editor, Lauren Appelbaum, has advanced degrees in journalism and worked in NBC News’ political unit with Chuck Todd and Andrea Mitchell.

Personally, I have worked for Sen. Tom Harkin of Iowa, a major disability leader who was key to the Americans with Disabilities Act and Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act (WIOA), as well as in the Independent Living movement. Our team is filled with self-advocates and experts on disability issues and we have a thriving fellowship program where young leaders can get concrete skills in politics, journalism and public policy. Our publication focuses on the intersection between politics and disability issues.

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Voters with Disabilities Key to 2016 Election Outcome

Majority of Voters Have a Disability or a Loved One with a Disability

Fully one-in-five Americans have a disability themselves and studies show that most of them want to work. People with disabilities are America’s largest minority group, and the only one that, due to an accident or illness, anyone can join at any time. Indeed, America has 56 million people with disabilities, more than 20 million of whom are working age.

Fifty-two percent of Democrats report that they or a loved one have a disability, and for Republicans, a smaller number of 44 percent report they have a disability. Surprisingly, Independents have the largest number of voters who say they have a disability, with 58 percent saying yes. This shows that swing voters with disabilities and their families are up for grabs.

“Issues of employment among people with disabilities can affect outcomes in competitive races,” Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg, PhD, said in a statement following a bipartisan poll of voters. “This community is far bigger than many people realize, including people in my profession.”

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Introducing The RespectAbility Report Focusing on 2016 Elections

Washington, D.C. – As the 2016 presidential campaign season gains speed, RespectAbility is reaching out to all of the campaigns to highlight the importance for all candidates to speak directly to voters with disabilities and their families by offering specific plans for a better future.

RespectAbility introduces its newest project – The RespectAbility Report – a nonpartisan political commentary on the 2016 U.S. elections with a focus on disability issues. Launched in June 2015, The RespectAbility Report is nonpartisan and neither rates nor endorses candidates. Expect to read fact-based updates and analysis from our staff based around the entire country. Staff writers will meet with the presidential candidates and report their proposals on disability issues. In addition staff writers report from the ground of candidate forums and debates.

Other features will look at the candidates’ websites to answer these questions and more: Do the candidates’ websites have plans for helping people with disabilities obtain jobs? Are the sites accessible, and can you use a screen reader? Look for answer to all these, and more, on The RespectAbility Report!

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The RespectAbility Report Focusing on 2016 Elections

Read The RespectAbility Report!
Clicking on the link will open a new tab with the report.

The RespectAbility Report is a nonpartisan political commentary on the 2016 U.S. elections with a focus on disability issues. Launched in June 2015, The RespectAbility Report is nonpartisan and neither rates nor endorses candidates.

Chief political writers for The RespectAbility Report include Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, former political and training director for Campaigns & Elections magazine and regular columnist for The Daily Record, and Lauren Appelbaum, former political researcher for NBC News.

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Breaking News: Jeb Bush to reach out on disability issues!

Please see the story below about Jeb Bush, who has not yet officially announced his candidacy, doing an event tomorrow to celebrate the Equal Opportunity for Students with Special Needs Act in Mississippi.  Earlier Gov. Phil Bryant made Mississippi Employment First for people with disabilities. Also make sure to read our piece about Hillary Clinton’s video failing to show people with disabilities here.  We will treat all candidates equally, but we want to see ALL of them covering these issues.

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