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Category: 2020 Campaign

Presidential Candidates Discriminate Against Voters with Disabilities

Four Candidates – Biden, Booker, Warren, Yang – Have Made Substantial Improvements in Website Accessibility Washington, D.C., Sept. 12 – Nearly three months after a report by the Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired found that all of the presidential candidates’ websites block democratic access to voters who are blind…

Harris Calls for Empowering “Ignored” Communities, Stresses Environmental Justice, During CNN Climate Town Hall

New York City, Sept. 5 – Sen. Kamala Harris called for environmental justice to empower “ignored” communities during the climate town hall on CNN. Carson Tueller, a man with a spinal cord injury who has thermodysregulation, leaving his body unable to control its own temperature and unable to sweat, asked…

Plastic Straw Ban Becomes Topic of Debate During CNN Climate Town Hall

New York City, Sept. 4 – For more than a year now, disability advocates have admonished the plastic straw ban, because it is clear the policy was enacted without the involvement of people with disabilities, some of whom need plastic straws to survive.  During the CNN Climate Town Hall, Sen. Kamala…

Kamala Harris Aims to Expand Economic Opportunity for Americans with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., August 29 – Presidential hopeful Sen. Kamala Harris is calling for expanded “economic opportunity and security for people with disabilities” in a plan unveiled today. She points out that just one-third of people with disabilities who are working-age are employed, compared to three-quarters of those without disabilities in the same age range.

Sen. Harris’ plan focuses on ways to “eliminate barriers that make it harder for people with disabilities to fully participate in our workforce.” One-in-four adults in the United States today have a disability and just 37 percent of those who are ages 18-64 are employed. This means that out of more than 20 million working-age people with disabilities, just 7.5 million have jobs. 

Her plan includes six parts:

Joe Biden, Cosponsor of the ADA, Pledges to Fully Break Down Barriers for People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., July 30 – In celebration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Joe Biden tweeted Friday that he was “proud to have cosponsored the Americans with Disabilities Act” and thanked Sen. Harkin for his “vision & persistence” to ensuring its passage, “a critical step in the fight…

On ADA Anniversary, Cory Booker Pledges to Ensure Equality for People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., July 30 – “We have more to do to ensure equality for Americans with disabilities who still face high poverty rates & barriers to health care & quality of life,” Cory Booker tweeted in commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) on Friday. “As president, I’ll fight…

Kamala Harris Campaign Launches Americans with Disabilities Leadership Council on Anniversary of the ADA

Washington, D.C., July 30 – Kamala Harris, who held an hour-long call with her supporters in commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) on Friday, wrote a blog post “recommitting to build an America that is fully inclusive and accessible for everyone,” noting that there is still a lot…

Andrew Yang Personally Thankful for 29th Anniversary of the ADA

Washington, D.C., July 30 – “For 29 years Americans with disabilities have had a greater sense of dignity and respect,” Andrew Yang tweeted in commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) on Friday. “More work to be done but my family is thankful for the ADA.” Yang is the…

On ADA Anniversary, Gillibrand Calls for Making Society Accessible for All

Washington, D.C., July 30 – “29 years ago, the Americans with Disabilities Act codified protections against discrimination based on disability,” Kirsten Gillibrand tweeted in commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) on Friday. “My presidency will advance this fight, including having disability community representation in my Cabinet. Let’s keep…

Julián Castro Committed to Protecting Civil Rights of People with Disabilities on ADA Anniversary

Washington, D.C., July 30 – “For 29 years, the Americans with Disabilities Act has helped defend the rights of disabled Americans,” Julián Castro tweeted in commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) on Friday. “It is integral to building an inclusive, fair, and just nation and as president, I…

On ADA Anniversary, Elizabeth Warren Committed to Americans with Disabilities’ Right to Live, Work and Love Independently

Washington, D.C., July 30 – In commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) on Friday, Elizabeth Warren tweeted several statements, the first of which she spoke about her first job out of college – “teaching students with speech and learning disabilities at a public school.” “It not only helped…

Bernie Sanders Says it is a Moral Responsibility to Champion Rights of People with Disabilities on Anniversary of the ADA

Washington, D.C., July 30 – In commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) on Friday, Bernie Sanders called for recommitting to “championing the rights of people with disabilities,” citing a “moral responsibility.” “We must guarantee people with disabilities the right to live in the community; truly integrated…

Amy Klobuchar: We are a Better Nation Because of the Americans With Disabilities Act

Washington, D.C., July 30 – “The Americans with Disabilities Act was passed 29 years ago today, ensuring accessibility for all Americans and prohibiting discrimination on the basis of disability,” Amy Klobuchar tweeted in commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the ADA on Friday. “It changed millions of lives and we’re a better nation…

On ADA Anniversary, O’Rourke Calls for Americans with Disabilities to Have Full Access to Education, Opportunity and the Workforce

Washington, D.C., July 30 – “The ADA is a landmark law—but recently, it has been under attack,” Beto O’Rourke tweeted in commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) on Friday. “29 years after its passage, let’s build a country where Americans with disabilities have full access to education, opportunity,…

Marianne Williamson Commemorates ADA Anniversary, Shows Lack of Disability Etiquette Knowledge in Postings

Washington, D.C., July 30 – Marianne Williamson’ Instagram post and Tweet in commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) on Friday have come under fire from many in the disability community for insensitive language and her focus on visiting a sheltered workshop in Las Vegas that pays its disabled employees less…

On ADA Anniversary, Steve Bullock Calls for People with Disabilities to Receive Equal Wages and Work Without Discrimination

Washington, D.C., July 30 – “29 years ago today, the ADA began to tear down the walls preventing them from the fair shot they deserve,” Steve Bullock tweeted in commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) on Friday. The Montana Governor also talked about his work as governor.…

With 13 Candidates Celebrating the Anniversary of the ADA, Will They Talk About Disability at the Debates?

Washington, D.C., July 30 – This year marks the 29th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) becoming law. The ADA was intended to ensure that people with disabilities could earn an income and achieve independence, just like anyone else. With the Democratic candidates debating this week in Detroit,…

How Accessible and Inclusive Are the Presidential Candidates’ Campaigns?

How to Tell If a Presidential Campaign is Inclusive of People with Disabilities Washington, D.C., June 26 – On the eve of the first round of Democratic debates, it is important to remember that one important group of swing voters are people with disabilities, who comprise 20 percent of our…

Will Voters with Disabilities Determine Campaign 2020?

Washington, D.C., June 25 – Two separate bipartisan polls following the last presidential election showed that voters with disabilities and their family and friends voted in big numbers for President Donald Trump. Fully three-quarters of likely voters either have a disability themselves or have a family member, or a close friend with disabilities. Therefore, as the 2020 campaign heats up, it is in the best interest of every presidential candidate and the citizens of this country for candidates to recognize disability issues during their campaigns.

“Candidates for office ignore the disability community at their peril,” said former U.S. Representative and Dallas Mayor Steve Bartlett. Bartlett, who was a primary author of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, is the board chair of RespectAbility, a Washington-based nonpartisan nonprofit that fights stigmas and advances opportunities so people with disabilities can participate in all aspects of community. “People with disabilities are politically active swing voters, and candidates should take note of the important issues they care about.”

According to the Census Bureau, more than 56 million Americans live with some form of disability. This can include visible conditions such as spinal cord injuries, visual impairments or hearing loss to people living with invisible disabilities such as learning disabilities, mental health or Autism.

Trump/Pence and Access for Voters with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., June 24 – President Trump kicked off his re-election campaign in Florida last week. According to polling, the President won slightly more votes from people with disabilities than Hillary Clinton in 2016, but what is his campaign doing to maintain this lead in 2020?

For a presidential campaign to be fully inclusive of people with disabilities, it needs to meet the following requirements: (1) offer captioning with every video it shares or produces, (2) mention people with disabilities and their issues, (3) depict people with visible disabilities in its media, (4) reach out to the disability community, and (5) provide accessible campaign events and website. While the President has mentioned employment for people with disabilities in his 2019 State of the Union address, and issued a proclamation for National Disability Employment Awareness Month, his campaign’s online presence has not yet met the mark on inclusivity.