PAPER TOWEL DISPENSERS, WASTE RECEPTACLES AND WARM-AIR
HAND DRYERS should be conveniently located in an area that is accessible to people
using wheelchairs, preferably adjacent to an accessible lavatory. It is recommended that one hand dryer be mounted with sufficient clear floor space to allow both left- and right-hand approaches; or provide two dryers, one for each type of approach. When a single hand dryer is installed in a restroom, it is recommended the operable part be located at 40 inches (1015mm) above the finish floor; when two or more dryers are installed, mount one dryer so the operable part is 40 inches (1015mm) and the other dryer at 48 inches (1220mm) maximum above the finish floor.
The 2009 ICC/ANSI Standards require altered installation heights and locations for towel dispensers and hand dryers where reaching is obstructed. The operable portions of these elements may need to be installed as low as 34 inches (865mm).

Voters With Disabilities Can Influence Election

President, RespectAbilityUSA.org
Posted: Updated: 
HoffPost Impact

Candidates are spending millions to win hotly contested elections as key battlegrounds are being drawn. Dozens of governor’s races are in play, as is control of the United States Senate. Now, according to a bipartisan battleground state surveycommissioned by RespectAbility of 1000 likely 2014 voters, swing voters in Senate and Governors races are more likely to vote for a candidate who makes a high priority of “enabling citizens with disabilities to get jobs and become independent.” Overall, voters are similarly more likely to support candidates for U.S. Senate making this a priority at 49 percent versus 5 percent, while for Governors it is 53 percent versus 3 percent. Key swing voter groups in these battleground states are also more likely to vote for senate candidates who support these policies.

2014-10-10-VoterswithDisabilitiesCanDetermineElection.jpg

Fully 56 percent of voters report having a family member or close friend with a disability, 43 percent do not. While conventional wisdom has long been that disability issues are the purview of the Democratic Party, the poll shows otherwise. Amongst likely voters with disabilities, 31 percent are Democrats, 31 percent are Independents and 36 percent are Republicans. Amongst their family members it is 35 percent Democrats, 33 percent Independents, 30 percent Republicans. For their close friends it is 36 percent Democrats, 38 percent Independents, and 24 percent Republicans. Thus this represents the ultimate swing voter group.

Said Stan Greenberg, PhD, “Issues of employment among people with disabilities can affect outcomes in competitive races for Senate and Governor. This community is far bigger than many people realize, including people in my profession.”

Likewise, Republican Whit Ayres commented, “We are accustomed to thinking about “soccer moms”, “Hispanics” or “values voters.” But this poll shows that Americans with disabilities – and those who care deeply about them are a demographic we need to pay attention to in the future.”

Today, 70 percent of people with disabilities (PwDs) are not employed, even though polls show that most of them would prefer to work. Our nation was founded on the principle that anyone who works hard should be able to get ahead in life. This poll demonstrates that Americans on both sides of the aisle will vote for candidates who share their belief that people with disabilities deserve to beable to work to achieve the American dream, just like anyone else.

The U.S. recently passed the new Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act (WIOA). However, WIOA has not yet been implemented. The next governor of every state will have the opportunity to dramatically shape these policies, and voters are demanding results. While voters are saying they want candidates who are committed to jobs and opportunities for citizens with disabilities, they don’t feel they are getting it today.

A majority of Americans (54 percent) think that the state government is “not doing enough/not doing anywhere near enough” to “help people with disabilities get jobs and become independent” while 28 percent think the state is “doing more than enough/enough.” While a majority respond the government is “not doing enough/not doing anywhere near enough”, over 30 percent more Democrats (73 percent) believe the government is not doing enough versus 40 percent of Republicans feel the same.

The partisan split is more pronounced on the role of the federal government. Overall, likely voters respond similarly to the question of whether the federal government is doing enough to “help people with disabilities get jobs and become independent.” More than half, 52 percent believe the federal government is “not doing enough/not doing anywhere near enough”(Dem 67, Rep 38), 35 percent believe it is “doing more than enough/enough” (Dem 19, Rep 49).

One of the biggest barriers for work is an outdated benefits system which was written for another time when it was assumed that people with disabilities would be dependent their whole lives. The Federal government literally called these programs “Aid to the Permanently and Totally Disabled.” These days new technology, medical breakthroughs, and a recognition that people with disabilities want to work have destroyed this antiquated thinking.

There is strong bi-partisan support, nearly 8 out of 10 voters, for increasing the current caps on monthly income ($1,070) and assets ($2,000) of people with disabilities in order to allow them to earn more without risking their benefits. Fully 88 percent of Democrats support this increase, 9 percent oppose and 68 percent of Republicans support, 26 percent oppose. Beyond personal support for changing this policy, 71 percent of Democrats and 40 percent of Republicans are more likely to vote for a candidate for U.S. Senate who supports this change. Only 5 percent of Democrats and 13 percent of Republicans are less likely to vote for senate candidates based on this issue.

Fully 88 percent feel that as a customer it is important “that the companies you do business with do not discriminate against qualified people with disabilities.” Over 60 percent feel that this is “very important.” And, despite the low levels of employment of people with disabilities, a nearly unanimous electorate (98 percent) is open and supportive to hiring more people with disabilities responding that if they were an employer, manager or small business owner, they would be “willing to hire a qualified person with a disability.”

Businesses should recognize that there are over 56 million Americans with disabilities. They are not only voters, they are consumers.

Nearly two-thirds of voters (65 percent) surveyed favor the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, also known as the Disability Treaty. The Disability Treaty is an international human rights treaty of the United Nations modeled after the Americans with Disabilities Act. This Treaty encourages the adoption of laws around the world that promote accessibility, equal opportunities and end abuse and discrimination of people with disabilities. Only 23 percent oppose the treaty.

The majority of likely American voters are experiencing disability, either because they have a disability or have a loved one who does. It impacts voting, and elected officials need to pay attention. Voters with disabilities want jobs and the people who love them want them to have the opportunity to succeed. Now is the time for candidates to bring forward their plans so that all Americans, regardless of their abilities, have the opportunity to work and succeed.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jennifer-laszlo-mizrahi/voters-with-disabilities-_b_5965086.html?utm_content=buffer6b455&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Follow Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi on Twitter:www.twitter.com/Respect_Ability

“The most basic and powerful way to connect to another person is to listen. Just listen. Perhaps the most important thing we ever give each other is our attention…. A loving silence often has far more power to heal and to connect than the most well-intentioned words.” (Rachel Naomi Remen – author, teacher, pioneer in integrative medicine)

Wishing you peace and wellbeing as you connect with one another.

Wishing you peace and wellbeing as you lift each other up emotionally and spiritually by your kinds words and actions.

I believe that you control your destiny, that you can be what you want to be. You can also stop and say, ‘No, I won’t do it, I won’t behave this way anymore. I’m lonely and I need people around me, maybe I have to change my methods of behaving,’ and then you do it.  (Leo Buscaglia)

Wishing you peace and wellbeing as you control your destiny.

PS: Remember to hold the one’s you love just a little closer and tighter this week.

12 Steps for Self Care

  1. If it feels wrong, don’t do it.
  2. Say “exactly” what you mean.
  3. Don’t be a people pleaser.
  4. Trust your instincts.
  5. Never speak bad about yourself.
  6. Never give up on your dreams.
  7. Don’t be afraid to say “No”.
  8. Don’t be afraid to say “Yes”.
  9. Be KIND to yourself.
  10. Let go of what you can’t control.
  11. Stay away from drama and negativity.
  12. LOVE

Wishing you peace and wellbeing as you work your 12 steps.

PS: Remember to hold the one’s you love just a little closer and tighter this week.

(source of the 12 Steps for Self Care is unknown – found in multiple sources)

 

Accommodating people with disability isn’t that hard; it’s partly about putting in effort but mostly, it’s about having the right attitude, as this story shows.

When Aaron Seldomridge first visited a Starbucks in Ephrata, Pennsylvania, he was with his mom, Janiece. Aaron has autism and Janiece asked barista Anisa Dujnic if they had a picture menu. Yes, they did. Anisa and Janiece helped Aaron to point to an image of an iced grande chai and repeat the words. A few weeks later, Aaron went to the counter with his mom and placed his order without the menu. And then, he started putting in his request — and paying for it — on his own.

Because Aaron was in an environment in which he felt encouraged and comfortable, he was confident enough to go it alone. “It’s great steps for him to take as a person,” Anisa said.

Really, it didn’t take much, just a little attention. Some customer customization–no more than goes into making, say, a mocha frap.

Stories like this make you wonder why accommodating kids and adults with disabilities seems like such a big deal to some people. Yes, on the surface this is just about serving a drink, which doesn’t take a whole lot of effort.

But at its heart, as special needs parents like me know, this isn’t “just” about a barista going the extra mile. It’s about a mindset: The readiness to give extra assistance to someone who needs it. The openness to working with the person with disability or a parent to figure out what can help. The willingness to find another way. The patience for letting things take their course. And the pure humanity of celebrating another person’s success.

I’d say this story is the exception, not the rule, in terms of attitudes toward welcoming people with disabilities. I know this firsthand from experiences with my son, Max, who has cerebral palsy — most recently, the program coordinator who flat out refused to accommodate him. Even within the Starbucks world, with its typically welcoming atmosphere, it boils down to individual mindsets (despite what the law might say); at one Starbucks in Brighton, NY, a woman with a brain injury who has a service dogsaid she taped an employee telling her that she could not come in with her dog.

Welcoming and accommodating kids and adults with disability should be a natural, organic part of society.

It’s so simple.

It’s no biggie.

If only….

Article by Ellen Seidman.  Ellen blogs about kids with special needs, she is a mother, and a magazine editor.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ellen-seidman/everyone-should-treat-peo_b_5754600.html?utm_hp_ref=email_share

June 1, 2014 | by Stephen Luntz


 

photo credit: PETA. An example of the misleading advertising

PETA have released online advertisements using two discredited studies to link autism to dairy consumption.

Unusually for PETA, the ad admits to a certain element of doubt. “More research is needed, but scientific studies have shown that many autistic kids improve dramatically when put on a diet free of dairy foods”. However, that is as far as the uncertainty goes. They patch up the limited studies with anecdotal accounts of anonymous parents whose children supposedly got better after being taken off milk products.

What PETA do not admit is that this further research has already been done and it shows that for all the reasons to give up dairy, a connection to autism is not one of them. The two studies PETA relies on had sample sizes of just 36 and 20 people respectively, barely enough for a pilot study. Dr Emma Burrows, an autism researcher at The Florey, Australia’s largest neuroscience institute, expressed concern about the statement. ”The balance of evidence suggests that this link does not deserve any media attention,” said Burrows. “This is just adding to the multitude of conflicting and bewildering recommendations that parents of children with autism have to sift through.”

The PETA ad also glosses over the initial papers concluding that gluten (usually from non-animal products) was as harmful as casein from milk products, the alleged source of the problem. Some children are indeed negatively affected by casein and should definitely be given diets free of animal milk, particularly that from cows, which is higher in casein than that of many other mammals. However, evidence for a connection to autism was always weak and has now been firmly discredited.

 

I discovered that people are not really afraid of dying; they’re afraid of not ever having lived, not ever having deeply considered their life’s higher purpose, and not ever having stepped into that purpose and at least tried to make a difference in this world.  (Joseph Jaworski. Synchronicity: The Inner Path of Leadership.)

Wishing you peace and well being as you make a difference in this world.

PS: Remember to hold the one’s you love just a little closer and tighter this week.

A PROCLAMATION BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Americans with disabilities lead thriving businesses, teach our children, and serve our Nation; they are innovators and pioneers of technology.  In urban centers and rural communities, they carry forward our Nation’s legacy of hard work, responsibility, and sacrifice, and their contributions strengthen our economy and remind us that all Americans deserve the opportunity to participate fully in society.  During National Disability Employment Awareness Month, we celebrate the Americans living with disabilities, including significant disabilities, who enrich our country, and we reaffirm the simple truth that each of us has something to give to the American story.

This year’s theme, “Expect. Employ. Empower.,” reminds us that every American has a right to dignity, respect, and a fair shot at success in the workplace.  For too long, workers with disabilities were measured by what people thought they could not do, depriving our Nation and economy of the full talents and contributions of millions of Americans.  Nearly 25 years ago, the Americans with Disabilities Act codified the promise of an equal opportunity for everyone who worked hard, and in the years since, Americans with disabilities have reached extraordinary heights.  But when employees with disabilities are passed over in the workplace or denied fair accommodations, it limits their potential and threatens our democracy; when disproportionate numbers of Americans with disabilities remain unemployed, more work must be done to achieve the spirit of what is one of the most comprehensive civil rights bills in the history of our country.

My Administration remains committed to tearing down the barriers that prevent Americans with disabilities from living fully independent, integrated lives.  We have supported programs that more effectively prepare workers, including those with disabilities, for high-growth, high-demand careers, and we have found new ways to encourage businesses to foster flexible workplaces that are open to diverse skills.  We are also working to ensure those living with disabilities have access to the resources that support employment, including accessible housing, transportation, and technology.

Meaningful careers not only provide ladders of opportunity into the middle class, but they also give us a sense of purpose and self-worth.  When Americans with disabilities live without the fear of discrimination, they are free to make of their
lives what they will.  This month, we renew our commitment to cultivate a more inclusive workforce, and we continue our efforts to build a society where everyone who works hard has a chance to get ahead.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim October 2014 as National Disability Employment Awareness Month.  I urge all Americans to embrace the talents and skills that individuals with disabilities bring to our workplaces and communities and to promote the right to equal employment opportunity for all people.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirtieth day of September, in the year of our Lord two thousand fourteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-ninth.

BARACK OBAMA