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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Disability Campaign Questionnaire – Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates

RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, is preparing a nonpartisan voter guide of all viable candidates in several Senate and gubernatorial elections on a variety of disability issues. This is being done in conjunction with our online publication, www.TheRespectAbilityReport.org, which is the definitive place for voters who care about the intersection of disability and electoral politics. Fully twenty percent of the U.S. population (56 million people) has a disability. With the addition of family members of people with disabilities, that percentage increases exponentially to include one in every three households in America affected by disability.

We have email lists of people in each state who have disabilities and/or a family member with a disability. We will share unedited responses with these lists as well as with members of the press who cover these issues in each state.

Our voter guide 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 they want us to share with the disability community. They may choose to answer each question individually for people with disabilities (PwDs), or to mention PwDs within a larger plan (i.e., your jobs, national security and crime plans) for the entire public.

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#RespectTheAbility Campaign Celebrates Model Employers that Demonstrate Inclusive Hiring on All Levels

Campaign spotlights model employers that demonstrate how hiring workers with disabilities benefits the employer, the employee and society

RespectAbilityUSA’s #RespectTheAbility campaign highlights the benefits companies reap when they hire talented people with disabilities. Using the hashtag #RespectTheAbility, the campaign hopes to ultimately erase negative and untrue stigmas associated with hiring people with disabilities.

“Many companies hire the best talent out there, no matter what package that talent comes in,” said Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, president of RespectAbilityUSA. “Employers’ focus should be on the abilities an individual brings to the table to better the organization, not any disabilities the individual may have. It is time for all employers to look beyond the disability, and understand the true value of these employees.”

The #RespectTheAbility campaign began in August 2014 with a focus on Ernst & Young LLP as a case study and featured a conference call with Lori Golden, Abilities Strategy Leader from Ernst & Young, on “Disabilities to Diverse Abilities: Changing the Workplace Paradigm.” Th 2015 campaign launched on the heels of the U.S. Business Leadership Network (USBLN) and the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD)’s first Disability Equality Index (DEI) naming 19 companies as DEI Best Places to Work. Developed by the DEI Advisory Committee, a diverse group of business leaders, policy experts, and disability advocates, the DEI is a national, transparent benchmarking tool that offers businesses an opportunity to receive an objective score, on a scale of zero to 100, on their disability inclusion policies and practices.

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New Report Shows 750,000 People with Disabilities Behind Bars; Offers Specific Recommendations to Include Disability Lens in Justice Reform Process



To download the report in an accessible Word document, click HERE
To download the PowerPoint presentation in an accessible PPT, click
HERE
Watch the video of our panel discussion on Capitol Hill HERE
Read the transcript of our panel discussion HERE

Disability and Criminal Just Reform Keys to Success
Washington, June 20 – As the White House and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle consider criminal justice reform, a new white paper,
“Disability & Criminal Justice Reform: Keys to Success” was released today by the nonprofit disability organization, RespectAbility. The report uses public data previously available but never before assembled and analyzed. It makes a series of recommendations to reduce the school-to-prison pipeline for people with disabilities, to enable incarcerated individuals with disabilities to receive the literacy and life skills they will need when they exit the justice system as well as have access to their human rights, and to help returning citizens become productive members of their communities.

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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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RespectAbility Hires National Leadership Director, Advances Leadership Opportunities

New Hire Brian Rowe Offers Nine Years Experience in Disability Field Promoting Skills Training and Job Placements

Brian Rowe

Brian Rowe

Rockville, Md. – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower Americans with disabilities to achieve the American Dream, is proud to introduce our new National Leadership Director, Brian Rowe.

“RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program offers hands-on work experiences and coaching for Fellows over a period of at least nine weeks in a dynamic and supportive environment,” President Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi said. “We are excited to announce Brian Rowe’s hiring, which will enable our Fellows to gain leadership skills and develop a portfolio of contacts while advancing our agenda.”

Prior to joining RespectAbility, Rowe worked in the disability field for nine years. He was a Program Manager for a company providing residential support for people with disabilities in Virginia. Rowe worked to accomplish the mission of helping persons with disabilities find happiness in their own homes, in their personal relationships and as contributing members of their communities. 

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South Dakota Disability Voter Guide Released: State has Highest Rate of Employment for People with Disabilities

Text: #PwDsVote Presidential Questionnaire: South Dakota Voter Guide, images of presidential candidates: Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump

Washington, May 31 – As voters head to the polls in South Dakota next week, RespectAbility is releasing its South Dakota Disability Voter Guide.

South Dakota ranks first in the nation for employment of people with disabilities as more than half the working-age people with disabilities (50.1 percent) in South Dakota have a job. Indeed, individuals with disabilities in South Dakota are TWICE as likely to be working as those in the worst performing state of West Virginia where only 25.6 percent have jobs. Rounding out the top five states in terms of best outcomes are North Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska and Wyoming.

There are 108,112 people with a disability living in South Dakota, 47,700 of whom are of working age (between the ages of 21 and 64). The 4,000 youth with disabilities between the ages of 16 and 20 living in South Dakota have increasing chances to successfully transition into the world of work. South Dakota’s voters are looking to know where the candidates stand on important disability issues in order to increase opportunities for competitive, integrated employment for people with disabilities.

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Washington, D.C., Disability Voter Guide Released

Text: #PwDsVote Presidential Questionnaire: Washington, D.C., Voter Guide, images of presidential candidates: Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump

Washington, May 30 – As the District’s Democrats head to the polls in two weeks, RespectAbility is releasing its Washington, D.C., Disability Voter Guide.

There are 68,830 people with a disability living in Washington, D.C., 40,200 of whom are of working age (between the ages of 21 and 64). There are an additional 4,800 people ages 16-20 with disabilities, many of whom are hoping to enter the workforce. The District’s voters are looking to know where the candidates stand on important disability issues in order to increase opportunities for competitive, integrated employment for people with disabilities.

The #PwDsVote 2016 Campaign Questionnaire was designed for people with disabilities (PwDs) and those who love them to know where candidates stand on the 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 responded by addressing all of the questions. They each have significantly different views on the issues.

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Updated North Dakota Disability Voter Guide Released: State has Second Highest Rate of Employment for People with Disabilities

Text: #PwDsVote Presidential Questionnaire: North Dakota Voter Guide, images of presidential candidates: Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump

Washington, May 30 – As North Dakota’s Democrats head to the polls next week, RespectAbility is releasing its updated North Dakota Disability Voter Guide.

North Dakota has the coveted distinction of being the state with the second highest rate of employment for individuals with disabilities, employing 49.9 percent of their citizens with disabilities, coming in closely behind South Dakota at 50.1 percent.

Fully 49.9 percent of the 38,037 working-age (between the ages of 21 and 64) people with disabilities are employed in North Dakota. The 2,100 youth with disabilities between the ages of 16 and 20 living in North Dakota have increasing chances to successfully transition into the world of work. North Dakota’s voters are looking to know where the candidates stand on important disability issues in order to increase opportunities for competitive, integrated employment for people with disabilities.

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New Mexico Disability Voter Guide Released: State’s Apprenticeship Program Serves People with Disabilities

Text: #PwDsVote Presidential Questionnaire: New Mexico Voter Guide, images of presidential candidates: Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump

Washington, May 30 – As voters head to the polls in New Mexico next week, RespectAbility is releasing its New Mexico Disability Voter Guide.

There are 311,773 people with a disability living in New Mexico, 157,900 of whom are of working age (between the ages of 21 and 64). There are an additional 9,900 people ages 16-20 with disabilities, many of whom are hoping to enter the workforce. New Mexico’s voters are looking to know where the candidates stand on important disability issues in order to increase opportunities for competitive, integrated employment for people with disabilities.

The #PwDsVote 2016 Campaign Questionnaire was designed for people with disabilities (PwDs) and those who love them to know where candidates stand on the 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 responded by addressing all of the questions. They each have significantly different views on the issues.

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