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National Leadership Program Summer 2020 Cohort. Individual headshots of 12 Summer/Fall Fellows smilingRockville, Maryland, August 9 – Twelve enthusiastic individuals, many of whom have disabilities, recently began RespectAbility’s Virtual National Leadership Program. RespectAbility is a national nonprofit fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community. Fellows learn about disability advocacy and gain the real-world skills required to become highly employable and impactful once they enter the workforce. Each Fellow specializes within areas of the organization that align with their career goals, including: public policy, nonprofit management, communications and community outreach.

Throughout the next six months, they will work on projects such as policy briefings, grant writing, social media content curation and media outreach, as well as soft skills including networking, public speaking and issue advocacy. [continue reading…]

New guide provides advice, resources and guidance on ensuring success for students with disabilities this fall

Washington, D.C., August 6 – As millions of students with disabilities and their parents face a new school year in the weeks ahead, the national disability inclusion nonprofit RespectAbility is releasing free resources to help students with disabilities succeed during the COVID-19 crisis. The new guide, entitled Virtual Education & Students With Disabilities: Supporting Student Success in the Time of COVID-19 and Beyond, is available for free on RespectAbility’s website. The guide covers critical topics such as virtual resources from a wide range of disability advocacy organizations, home-based programs for students of all ages, live synchronous learning opportunities, state-specific information for parents of students with disabilities and mental health resources.

“Educational success is daunting for all students, families and teachers during this pandemic,” said Debbie Fink, a former educator and RespectAbility’s Director of Community Outreach and Impact. “However, it is even more daunting for students with disabilities. This is especially the case in underfunded school districts and for families without access to internet, technology devices and other key supports. Hence, we hope these consolidated resources will help students with disabilities of all backgrounds, as well as their families and educators.” [continue reading…]

Toolkit provides advice and local resources for finding employment in challenging economic environment

Los Angeles, California, July 31 – Angelenos with disabilities have a powerful new toolkit to help them prepare for and find new jobs and great careers. The Los Angeles office of RespectAbility has partnered with the City of Los Angeles Department on Disability, UNITE-LA and Fiesta Educativa to release a comprehensive toolkit for job seekers with disabilities in Los Angeles, which will, in the words of Mayor Eric Garcetti, “grow and build upon their own professional strengths, and put them to work — so that we can create a better city of the future for all of us, together.”

The toolkit, entitled “Finding a Job as a Person with a Disability in Los Angeles,” will be launched during a keynote address by Stephen David Simon, Executive Director of the City of Los Angeles Department on Disability, who describes the toolkit as a “cornerstone of regional efforts to help people with disabilities to gain, retain, and advance their employment opportunities.” Simon’s keynote, on Friday, July 31, will anchor the final day of RespectAbility’s #ADA30 Summit 2020, offering his vision for people with disabilities in LA in the coming years, as part a day-long focus on the way that citizens and the government can partner for the future. [continue reading…]

Brad Sherman headshotWashington, D.C., July 29 – With the COVID-19 pandemic ravaging communities nationwide, California Rep. Brad Sherman is speaking to the nation about disability rights, inclusion in financial services, and community investment on the thirtieth anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Starting this Monday, July 27, the national disability nonprofit RespectAbility has been hosting a series of virtual #ADA30 events focused on some of the most critical issues impacting people with disabilities in our nation today. [continue reading…]

#ADA30 Summit 2020 Leadership Making A Difference for the Future. Headshots of speakers with their titles. Friday July 31 at 1 PM ET. Registration link. ASL interpretation symbol. RespectAbility logo.Los Angeles, July 28 – This week, America has been celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the most comprehensive piece of civil rights legislation ever passed for people with disabilities.

In celebration, the disability advocacy nonprofit RespectAbility, with a significant operation in Los Angeles, is hosting #ADA30 Summit 2020. Its crowning day will focus on how citizens and the government can partner to bring about the future that we would like to see by the time the ADA turns 40. It will be star-studded with messages from national, state and local leaders, including National Governors Association Chair Gov. Larry Hogan, Former Gov. and Cabinet Secretary Tom Ridge and Sen. Chris Van Hollen. [continue reading…]

#ADA30 Summit 2020 Celebrating Artists with Disabilities Grand Opening. On the right is an image by Paul Klee. Named Senecio - circa 1922 - it is an oil painting on canvas. Logos for RespectAbility and Phillips Collection

The Phillips Collection participates in celebration of artists with disabilities to commemorate 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Washington, D.C. — The Phillips Collection is delighted to announce a partnership with RespectAbility for the upcoming #ADA30 Summit 2020. The summit is a free, virtual, week-long celebration in honor of the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Together with RespectAbility, The Phillips Collection will provide participants with daily virtual, accessible gallery tours that celebrate artists with disabilities. The summit will run from Monday, July 27, through Friday, July 31, 2020.

“The Phillips Collection is honored to be a part of such a monumental milestone for Americans with disabilities, and for the opportunity to showcase works of art from our collection for this celebration,” says Dr. Dorothy Kosinski, Vradenburg Director and CEO of The Phillips Collection. “We are honored to welcome and learn from communities with different cognitive and physical abilities, including combat- related stress injuries.” [continue reading…]

#ADA30 Summit 2020: Fighting Stigmas with Hollywood Headshots of 12 speakers grouped by panel - Respecting The Ability: Ensuring Authentic Disability Representation in the Entertainment Industry - Disability Representation in media And special appearances by 12 actors with disabilities and other change-makers in Hollywood Date and Time, Registration link, ASL interpretation symbol and RespectAbility logoLos Angeles, California, July 24 – As the entertainment industry seeks to be more inclusive of talent with disabilities, RespectAbility, the nonprofit that produced The Hollywood Disability Inclusion Toolkit, highlights examples of best practice among studio executives, producers, writers and actors in both the television and film industry during a virtual event.

Taking place as part of a larger week-long celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), ADA30 Summit: Fighting Stigmas With Hollywood airs live on both Zoom and Facebook Live on Wednesday, July 29, from 1:00 – 3:30 p.m. ET / 10:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. PT. [continue reading…]

#ADA30 Summit 2020 The Future of Work for People with Disabilities. Individual Headshots of Mark Feinour, Brad Sherman, Philip Kahn-Pauli, Shane Kanady, Craig Leen, Mark Schultz, Tina Williams, Janet LaBreck, Vincenzo Piscopo and Jim Sinocchi, with their names and job titles next to each headshot, grouped by panel. Thursday, July 30, 2:00 p.m. ET / 11:00 a.m. PT Register Today: ASL interpretation symbol. RespectAbility logoWashington, D.C., July 22 – With more than 1 million workers with disabilities out of work due to COVID-19, the national disability nonprofit RespectAbility is hosting a two-part panel of thought leaders to honor the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and to talk about building a better future of work for people with disabilities.

Taking place on Thursday, July 30, The Future of Work for People with Disabilities is part of a weeklong series of virtual #ADA30 events focused on building a better future and successful ways to get more people with disabilities into the workforce. [continue reading…]

New Tools to Be Released

#ADA30 Summit 2020 Education and Skills for a Better Future Individual Headshots of Gerard Robinson, Ollie Cantos, Sneha Dave, Paul Luelmo and Nicole Homerin smiling, with their names and job titles next to each headshot. Monday, July 27, 2:00 p.m. ET / 11:00 a.m. PT Register Today: ASL interpretation symbol. RespectAbility logoWashington, D.C., July 22 – As more than 6.3 million students in America with disabilities are coping with COVID-19, the national disability nonprofit RespectAbility is hosting experts and self-advocates to mark the 30th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act and to promote greater success for students with disabilities.

“Thus far during the pandemic, distance learning has been a train-wreck for students with disabilities. Much more must be done so that no more harm comes to students with disabilities. This includes both access to real learning and preventing further mental health distress,” said Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, president of RespectAbility. Mizrahi is dyslexic herself and, as a parent of a child with disabilities, is working to enable her own child to have access to a quality education during this current COVID-19 crisis. [continue reading…]

#ADA30 Summit 2020 Ensuring Inclusive Communities Through Inclusive Philanthropy. Individual Headshots of Stacy Palmer, Kym Eisner, Stephanie Lomibao, Jose Plaza and Lisa Trygg. Tuesday, July 28, 1:00 p.m. ET / 11:00 a.m. PT Register Today: ASL interpretation symbol. RespectAbility logoLos Angeles, California, July 22 – Across America people are doing vital work – protesting and working to fight structural racism. At the same time, Black and other people with disabilities are being excluded even in nonprofit groups that are working to fight inequity.

RespectAbility conducted a major study and published Disability in Philanthropy & Nonprofits, which looked at the levels of disability inclusion in the social sector across the country. The largescale study found significant data showing that nationwide, organizations overall want to be inclusive, but are unintentionally excluding the one-in-five people with disabilities. [continue reading…]

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