Born This Way Nominated for 3 Emmy Awards, Stigma Busting for People with Disabilities

Image shows smiling faces of the seven cast members with the following text at the bottom: Born This Way - new season July 26 - A&EWashington, July 14 – A&E Network’s critically acclaimed and award-winning original docuseries Born This Way’s honors keep adding up – showing that disability is a winning theme.

Born This Way was nominated for an Emmy this morning for Outstanding Unstructured Reality Program. In addition, two episodes were nominated for Outstanding Picture Editing for an Unstructured Reality Program.

Produced by Bunim/Murray Productions, the series follows a group of seven young adults with Down syndrome along with their family and friends in Southern California. During its first season, Born This Way grew across all demographics each episode, with adults 25-54 up 84 percent, adults 18-49 up 64 percent and total viewership up 67 percent by the end of the season. Recently, the series was chosen as one of six honorees for the 2016 Television Academy Honors, an award that recognizes television programming that inspires, informs and motivates.

RespectAbility has been honored to have been consulted during the creation and production of Born This Way and congratulates the entire team for its hard work in achieving this nomination.

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Advocates Protest Disability Snuff Film “Me Before You”

Washington, June 3 – Disability rights advocates in cities across the United States and around the world are protesting the latest Hollywood movie to end with the assisted suicide or euthanasia of the lead disabled character. Protests already have been held in New York City, Boston and Denver, with more planned throughout opening weekend in Los Angeles, Berkeley, Atlanta, Chicago, Baltimore, Philadelphia and other cities.

Me Before You is scheduled for general audience release on Friday, June 3rd. Some cities also have been providing advance screenings. Members of Not Dead Yet UK protested at the London premier on May 24th and garnered significant mainstream media coverage (GuardianBuzzfeed) during the protest and in the days following.

“The last big example of this tired theme was Million Dollar Baby, which came out before the major growth of social media but still resulted in protests covered in the New York Times,” said Stephen Drake, research analyst for Not Dead Yet (USA). “We can’t begin to keep track of the people and cities involved this time.”

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#OscarsSoAble and the Failed Annenberg Report: The Missing Disability Dimension in Diversity Conversations & Actions

Academy Award Oscar Statuettes

Photo by Toby Canham/Getty Images

Washington, Feb. 27 – With the #OscarsSoWhite campaign, a spotlight has been put on the lack of racial diversity in the Oscars. Article after article focuses on the absence of Black, Hispanic, Latino and Asian Americans being nominated by the Academy. That is needed. However, it’s not enough.

“Diversity must really mean diversity – and that includes the one-in-five Americans who has a disability.” Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, president of RespectAbility, said. “Disability needs to be part of every conversation on diversity. We support the #OscarsSoWhite response, but we are fighting for including for everyone.”

Dominick Evans is a director/filmmaker with a disability who runs weekly #FilmDis chats on the exclusion of people with disabilities in film. He has called for Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs to include all when discussing diversity in her response to #OscarsSoWhite.

“Until we are included in all aspects of the industry, those of us with disabilities will continue to be treated like second-class citizens,” Evans said. He’s calling for everyone to contact the Academy to urge Isaacs to add people with disabilities to her list of minority communities to include in film.

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Invite to A&E Network TV Screening: RSVP Required

born this way pic 1

A&E® Network and Bunim/Murray Productions
Invite you to a Special Screening Event



Tuesday, December 1


5:00 PM – 7:30 PM


Rayburn House Office Building, Room B-340

Independence Avenue between First Street SW

and South Capitol Street

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A&E Network to Premiere New Original Docu-Series “Born This Way”

Washington, Nov. 11 – Stigmas matter —  and that they are hard to break. This week the horrible news broke that hate crimes against people with disabilities are up 41 percent in one country alone. Thus, I am delighted to share this press release below about a great new stigma-busting show about people with developmental disabilities. Earlier the creator of this show, Jonathan Murray, won an Emmy for his outstanding documentary, Autism: The Musical. He also created our first-ever public service ad, #RespectTheAbility which starred T.J. Lavin from his MTV show THE CHALLENGE. We’ve been involved in the creation of this new show, and are very proud of the results. It is so honest and fun!

Can you please share this with all who care? I know they will love it too.

Thanks in advance!

Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi

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