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Category archive for: Republicans

Brian Sandoval Speaks with Pride about Jobs for Nevadans with Disabilities

Washington, Feb. 28 – Speaking abut the improving economy of Nevada, Gov. Brian Sandoval said “it has to be an economy that is available to everyone,” especially for Nevadans with disabilities.

Speaking with The RespectAbility Report on the sidelines of the National Governors Association’s Winter Meeting, the Republican governor stressed the importance of disability employment. He highlighted the inclusive hiring efforts being done by Starbucks at their Carson Valley Roasting Plant and Distribution Center in Minden, Nevada. In 2015, Sandoval visited the graduation ceremony for the inaugural class of Starbucks Inclusion Academy graduates. The Inclusion Academy is an “on-the-job training program for people with cognitive and physical disabilities” that prepares them for exciting careers at the global coffee giant’s largest distribution plant. One of the plant’s employees, a Special Olympics athlete named Shawn Stainbrook said that “going to work at Starbucks”…gave him “goals” and taught him to “never give up.”

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Matt Mead on Wyoming’s First in the Nation Standing on Jobs for People with Disabilities

Washington, Feb. 27 – With 57 percent of their citizens with disabilities employed, the state of Wyoming has good reason to be proud. Speaking with The RespectAbility Report at the National Governor’s Association’s Winter Meeting, Gov. Matt Mead credited Wyoming’s “culture and heritage” for why his state has the highest employment rate for people with disabilities of any state in the nation.

Mead says this culture is part of a common desire to “make sure we are doing our best for every one of our citizens.” Mead added that people in his state understand that what is “best for our state” is “giving every citizen an opportunity.”

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Asa Hutchinson Talks about Jobs for People with Disabilities in Arkansas

Washington, Feb. 27 – According to Gov. Asa Hutchinson, jobs matter because “everybody, no matter of a disability or not, has a desire to work, a desire to contribute and to be meaningful in life.”

Speaking at the National Governors Association Winter Meeting, the Republican governor of Arkansas also emphasized the critical impact of employment in terms of “opportunity” and “fulfillment” and the sense of “really contributing something.”

People with disabilities face serious physical, attitudinal and economic barriers to entering the workforce and earning an income. In Arkansas alone, there are 264,777 working-age people with disabilities. Out of that number, 81,376 have jobs for a total employment rate of 30.7 percent. That percentage puts Arkansas at 43 out of all 50 states. However, the employment rate for people with disabilities in Arkansas is slowly trending upward. Between 2014 and 2015, 4,016 Arkansans with disabilities entered the workforce. Looking at RespectAbility’s 2016 Best and Worst States Report, Arkansas has risen in the ranking, up to 43rd in the nation from 45th last year.

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Doug Ducey Talks Civics Education and Students with Disabilities at NGA

Washington, Feb. 26 – At a special session of the National Governors Association’s Winter Meeting, Gov. Doug Ducey of Arizona focused on the importance of civics education for all students, including children with disabilities. He introduced a video presentation from the Joe Foss Institute about the lack of civic knowledge and political engagement among young people today.

“It’s cute when a 5-year-old doesn’t know who the current president is,” Ducey said to the audience gathered at the NGA. “But when 10 percent of our college graduates believe that Judge Judy sits on the Supreme Court, it’s not that funny.”

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Polling Shows People with Disabilities Split Vote Between Trump and Clinton

Near unanimous bipartisan agreement that a candidate should treat people with disabilities with dignity and respect

Download the slide presentation with all poll data (PDF or accessible PPT).

Washington, Dec. 14 – Two separate bipartisan polls showed results that may surprise Washington insiders: voters with disabilities and their family and friends voted in big numbers for President-elect Donald Trump. While polls showed that many voters felt Trump made fun of people with disabilities, he was seen as stronger on changing Washington and failed economic policies that hold people with disabilities back.

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Burr (NC-R), Hassan (NH-D), Van Hollen (MD-D) Highlighted Disability in Campaign TV Ads

Washington, Nov. 12 – Multiple winning Senate campaigns touted their work on disability issues in television ads as a new poll shows that addressing disability issues is a winning campaign strategy.

In the final days of the election season, Rep. Chris Van Hollen, a Democrat who won the open U.S. Senate seat in Maryland, highlighted his work on the passage of the bipartisan Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) to Work Act, legislation that enables people with disabilities and their families to save money in special ABLE savings accounts without risking their eligibility for government benefits.

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Honoring All Veterans on Veterans Day: What are Trump’s policies for veterans with disabilities?

Washington, Nov. 11 – As the nation celebrates Veterans Day, it is important to truly remember our veterans and ensure we are taking care of their needs.

One of their top priorities is employment. Government policies that help veterans with disabilities get and keep jobs are a win-win because they allow veterans the dignity and financial benefits of work and also grow our economy and save taxpayer money.

One year ago, President Elect Donald Trump said, “I will” when asked if he is committed to getting more veterans and people with disabilities employed.

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Trump Cabinet Possibilities: Where is the Disability Representation?

Washington, Nov. 10 – RespectAbility has obtained an internal document from the Trump transition team titled “Trump Cabinet Possibilities.” We have been told the people listed below currently are being vetted for 22 key posts within the Trump administration.

Looking at the list, it is clear that few of the people have any experience in working with the disability community and none of them self-identify publicly as being people with disabilities themselves.

“Fully one-in-five Americans has a disability and the majority of Americans have a loved one with a disability,” RespectAbility President Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi said. “It is vital for the Trump administration to reflect America, including talented people with disabilities. The administration needs people who have real, proven experience in enabling people with disabilities to receive the education and training they need to succeed in gaining jobs and independence.”

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Down Ballot Candidates who Support Opportunities for People with Disabilities Win Big

Washington, Nov. 9 – RespectAbility congratulates Mr. Donald Trump on his win of the presidency and looks forward to working with his new administration in the future and sincerely hopes he will work with diverse parts of America in every sense of the word.

Looking down ballot, several senate and gubernatorial candidates who support opportunities for people with disabilities (PwDs) won big Tuesday night – confirming the results from a new poll released last week. The poll showed that voters were more likely to support candidates who prioritize ensuring that children with disabilities get the education and training they need to succeed as well expanding job and career opportunities for people with disabilities. The poll also showed that voters with disabilities overwhelmingly thought that America was on the wrong track.

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Scott, Supporter of People with Disabilities, Victorious in Vermont Gubernatorial Bid

Washington, Nov. 9 – Republican Lt. Gov. Phil Scott beat out Democrat candidate Sue Minter for Vermont’s open governorship.

Scott completed the #PwDsVote Disability Questionnaire for presidential, senate and gubernatorial candidates put out by RespectAbility, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization working to end stigmas and advance opportunities for people with disabilities. Minter also responded to the questionnaire.

Scott mentions in the questionnaire how his commitment to reducing stigmas of people with disabilities led him to write the opening message for the Statewide Independent Living Council’s K-12 curriculum.

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Burr Promotes Work on ABLE Act in Campaign, Wins Re-Election

Washington, Nov 8 – North Carolina Republican Sen. Richard M. Burr, a 20-year Republican veteran of Congress, won a tough re-election against Deborah Ross, a Democratic former state director of the American Civil Liberties Union.

Burr completed the #PwDsVote Disability Questionnaire for presidential, senate and gubernatorial candidates put out by RespectAbility, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization working to end stigmas and advance opportunities for people with disabilities. Ross also responded to the questionnaire.

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Candidates Detail Disability Policy Positions

Washington, Nov. 4 – A new poll shows that voters are more likely to support candidates who prioritize education, employment and disability policies. So while it’s easy to get stuck in the horse race, readers and viewers are looking for coverage about these important issues. That’s even more true for the 56 million people with disabilities (one in five Americans), more than 35 million of whom are eligible voters (one-sixth of the electorate).

So RespectAbility, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization working to end stigmas and advance opportunities for people with disabilities founded in 2013, asked candidates for president, governor and U.S. Senate 17 questions ranging from topics of employment and housing to education, healthcare and more. Thirty-nine down ballot candidates, including 26 for Senate and 11 for governor, from both sides of the aisle (24 Democrats, 14 Republicans, 1 Green Party) have responded so far, showing that disability rights is a nonpartisan issue. An additional nine candidates responded that they are not completing any questionnaires during this campaign season. The responses also are geographically diverse, coming from states all around the country as politicians are paying more and more attention to the disability community. This is the first time down-ballot candidates have been asked to complete a questionnaire about disability-related issues on such a wide scale.

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Unveiling 51 State Voter Guides

Washington, Oct. 27 – While the presidential election has taken up much of the news cycle, attention also is shifting to who will control the Senate. As such, RespectAbility has reached out to candidates running for Senate as well as Governor in the 2016 elections with the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility, founded in 2013, is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization working to end stigmas and advance opportunities for people with disabilities. Utilizing candidate responses to both the down ballot and presidential campaign questionnaires, RespectAbility has released 51 state voter guides.

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Hawaii’s John Carroll Completes #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

Washington, Oct. 17 – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, has asked Senate candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. Republican John Carroll, who is challenging Democrat incumbent Sen. Brian Schatz for the senate seat representing Hawaii, completed the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.

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Disability Issues Missing At Second Presidential Debate

Washington, Oct. 10 – For last night night’s town hall style debate, ABC and CNN welcomed questions submitted via the Open Debate Coalition’s portal. All of the top 30 questions that moderators promised to consider received more than 20,000 votes, and an important disability rights question had nearly 12,000 votes.

Yet none of the 30 – or the disability-related question, which was #52 of thousands – were asked, leaving the disability community lacking for information.

James Carter, an undecided African American voter from Missouri, asked a question that opened the door for both candidates to include people with disabilities, a minority group that represents one-in-five Americans.

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Trump’s PTSD Statements Further Stigma on Mental Health

Earlier this week, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump said that "strong" veterans do not have mental health problems like post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), implying that those who do are "weak" and "can't handle it."

“When you talk about the mental health problems, when people come back from war and combat, they see things that maybe a lot of the folks in the room have seen many times over. And you’re strong and you can handle it, but a lot of people can’t handle it,” Trump said to a room full of military veterans during an event in Northern Virginia on Monday morning. "And they see horror stories, they see events that you couldn’t see in a movie — nobody would believe it."

People with mental health disabilities, especially in the military, often do not seek help because of stigma surrounding mental health issues and the idea that asking for help is seen as being weak. When a major party presidential candidate perpetuates the idea that PTSD is a sign of weakness, that is dangerous for veterans and other people with PTSD who may not disclose their symptoms for fear that they are a sign of weakness.

But while many people jumped on these comments as being anti-veteran and anti-disability, the individual who asked the question, Marine Staff Sgt. Chad Robichaux, disagreed.

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Act Now to Have Candidates Answer a Disability Rights Question in the Next Debate

During this presidential campaign, the disability community has seen its issues discussed like never before - in policy proposals, party platforms, conventions and in the media.

But we haven't yet witnessed presidential candidates answering a debate question about disability rights. People with disabilities - and those who care about them - can make a huge difference in changing that.

The "town hall" debate on Sunday, Oct. 9, will feature questions from the Internet. ABC and CNN moderators agreed to consider the top 30 questions voted up on the Open Debate Coalition site.

This gives us an incredible opportunity to demonstrate the size and strength of our whole community by voting in support of a disability debate question.

The question, "How would you value disability rights in your presidency?" is currently in the top 80 out of almost 10,000 questions that have been submitted!

If you want a question on disability rights to be asked during the next presidential debate, VOTE on this question for Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump to answer. Also, please share it widely with your networks.

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Pence Includes People with Disabilities as One of the Most Vulnerable

Washington, Oct. 5 – During 2016’s only vice presidential debate, neither Sen. Tim Kaine nor Gov. Mike Pence addressed the rights of people with disabilities – the nation’s largest minority comprising one-in-five Americans.

Republican hopeful Pence was the only candidate to even mention the word, while answering a question about abortion.

“A society can be judged by how it deals with its most vulnerable: the aged, the infirm, the disabled and the unborn,” Pence said. While he did include people with disabilities, many people with disabilities are criticizing him for how he did so.

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Oregon’s Mark Callahan Completes #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

Washington, Oct. 4 – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, has asked Senate candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. Mark Callahan, a Republican challenging incumbent Sen. Ron Wyden to be the next U.S. Senator representing Oregon, responded to the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.

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30 Candidates Respond to #PwDsVote Down Ballot Campaign Questionnaire

30 Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates, as well as Hillary Clinton, Respond to #PwDsVote Campaign Questionnaire

Washington, Sept. 29 – As more candidates begin to understand the importance of including people with disabilities within their campaigns, they start thinking about issues of critical importance to the disability community.

A recently released Pew poll shows that voters with disabilities span the political and demographic spectrum and can determine who wins the elections.

Political campaigns know that this is a swing vote and Sec. Hillary Clinton has made this a new centerpiece of her campaign. Likewise, Republican Sen. Richard Burr in North Carolina has made it central to his re-election effort.

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