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Category: Republicans

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…

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.

Alaska Loses 275 Jobs for People with Disabilities; Ranks 12th in the Country for Disability Employment Rate

Washington, D.C., April 2 – While nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 275 people with disabilities in Alaska exited the workforce last year. Alaska now ranks 12th in the nation for employment rates of people with disabilities with 23,815 of the 53,087 working-age (18-64) Alaskans with disabilities…

Bad News: 4,173 West Virginians with Disabilities Lose Jobs; Ranks Worst in Country

Washington, D.C., March 29 – While nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 4,173 people with disabilities in West Virginia exited the workforce last year. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows there are 188,696 working-age (18-64) people with disabilities living in West Virginia. Out of that number, only…

1,014 Massachusetts Residents with Disabilities Lose Jobs, Bay State Drops to 27th in Nation

Washington, D.C., March 27 – While nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 1,014 Massachusetts residents with disabilities exited the workforce last year. Said Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, president of RespectAbility, “After strong job growth for people with disabilities in the state, this is a very troubling development. People…

Great news: 5,760 New Jobs for Arizonans with Disabilities Last Year

Washington, D.C., March 27 –Nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 5,760 of which went to Arizonans with disabilities. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows there are 428,198 working-age (ages 18-64) people with disabilities living in Arizona. Out of that number, only 156,194 have jobs. That means the…

As Mississippi Loses 2,875 Jobs for People with Disabilities, Gov. Phil Bryant Wants More Opportunities

Washington, D.C., March 23 – While nationally 111,084 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 2,875 people with disabilities left Mississippi’s workforce last year. Mississippi now ranks 48th in the nation for employment rates of people with disabilities. Out of the 265,344 working-age (18-64) Mississippi residents living with a disclosed disability,…

2,473 Arkansans with Disabilities Gain Jobs

Washington, D.C., March 22 –Nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities; 2,473 were Arkansans with disabilities who entered the workforce last year. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows there are 285,023 working-age (ages 18-64) people with disabilities living in Arkansas. Out of that number, only 87,920 have jobs.…

3,769 Alabamians with Disabilities Lose Jobs; Ranks 49th out of 50 States

Washington, D.C., March 22 –While nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 3,769 people with disabilities in Alabama exited the workforce last year. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows there are 418,429 working-age (ages 18-64) people with disabilities living in Alabama. Out of that number, only 112,030 have…

4,725 new jobs for Ohioans with disabilities as Gov. DeWine takes office

Washington, D.C., March 21 – Last year, 4,725 Ohioans with disabilities found new employment opportunities, increasing the Buckeye State’s disability employment rate. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows that 840,199 working-age (18-64) people with disabilities live in Ohio and 309,665 of them have jobs. Ohio ranks 33rd for employment rates…

Utah Becomes 3rd in the Nation for Employment of People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., March 21 – Amid a trend of nationwide job growth for people with disabilities, Utah is outperforming far bigger states like California and Texas. According a new report by the nonpartisan advocacy group RespectAbility, the Beehive State now ranks 3rd in the nation for employment of people with disabilities.…

Texas Gains 3,796 Jobs for People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., March 21 – Nationwide 111,804 people with disabilities got new jobs last year, including 3,796 new jobs in the Lone Star State. Texas now ranks 23rd in the nation based on the employment rate of people with disabilities. Out of 1,622,962 working-age (18-64) Texans with disabilities, 647,977 have jobs.…

Tennessee Gains 4,679 Jobs for People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., March 20 – 4,679 Tennesseans with disabilities entered the workforce last year, part of a national trend of jobs gained among people with disabilities. Tennessee now ranks 44th in the nation based on the employment rate for people with disabilities. Out of the 538,061 working-age (18-64) Tennessee natives with disabilities,…

904 South Dakotans with Disabilities Lost Jobs

Washington, D.C., March 20 – While nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 904 South Dakotans with disabilities exited the workforce last year. Said Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, president of RespectAbility, “After strong job growth for people with disabilities in the state, this is a very troubling development. People…

Indiana Gains 8,964 Jobs for People with Disabilities as State’s Disability Employment Rate Steadily Increased Over Past Three Years Under Gov. Eric Holcomb

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb smiling in front of the American flag and the state flag
Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb

Washington, D.C., March 17 – As nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 8,964 Hoosiers with disabilities entered Indiana’s workforce last year. Indiana now ranks 24th in the nation based on the employment rate for people with disabilities. Out of 477,660 working-age (18-64) people with disabilities living in the Hoosier state, 84,343 have jobs. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows Indiana has an employment rate of 38.6 percent for people with disabilities. Further analysis by the nonpartisan advocacy group RespectAbility shows that Indiana’s disability employment rate has steadily increased over the past three years.

Crucial to Indiana’s efforts to expand employment opportunities for Hoosiers with disabilities is the Governor’s Council for People with Disabilities. Founded in 1980, the Council works on a variety of advocacy, leadership and training opportunities across the state. In March, the Council celebrates Disability Awareness Month with a public relations campaign to raise awareness of disability issues. The theme for this year’s campaign is “Be Cool. We Are.”

Gov. Eric Holcomb is doing his part to celebrate the month and to celebrate the contributions of Hoosiers with disabilities. “Disability in no way diminishes the right of individuals with disabilities to live independently, make choices, contribute to society, and fully participate in the economic, political, social, cultural and educational mainstream of American society,” he wrote in a proclamation released on March 1st.

As South Carolina Loses 6977 Jobs for People with Disabilities, Gov. Henry McMaster Wants More Opportunities

Governor Henry McMaster smiling in front of an American flag and the South Carolina state flag
South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster

Washington, D.C., March 16 –While nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 6,977 people with disabilities left South Carolina’s workforce. South Carolina now ranks 45th in the nation for employment rates for people with disabilities. Out of the 376,889 working-age (18-64) South Carolina natives with disabilities, only 122,789 have jobs. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows South Carolina has a disability employment of only 32.6 percent for people with disabilities.

Further analysis by the nonpartisan advocacy group RespectAbility shows that the job losses in the past year come after more than 23,000 people with disabilities entered the Palmetto State’s workforce back in 2016.

Gov. Henry McMaster, who just won a full four-year term this past November, has previously expressed his desire to advance opportunities for his citizens with disabilities. “South Carolinians with disabilities have the same aspirations to competitively work and contribute to their communities as anyone else,” McMaster wrote in an October 2018 proclamation written in honor of Disability Employment Awareness Month. “All people are needed to reduce attitudinal and physical barriers that hinder the full acceptance of people with disabilities and their rightful place in employment.”

Missouri Gains 8,040 New Jobs for People with Disabilities as Gov. Mike Parson Makes New Commitment to Expand Employment

Missouri Governor Mike Parson smiling in front of a grey backdrop
Missouri Governor Mike Parson

Washington, D.C., March 16 – Nationwide 111,804 people with disabilities got new jobs last year, including 8.040 new jobs in the Show Me State. Missouri now ranks 31st in the nation in terms of the employment rate for people with disabilities. Overall, there are 463,965 working-age (18-64) Missouri natives with disabilities and 172,283 have jobs. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows Missouri has an employment rate of 37.1 percent.

This news comes out weeks after Missouri Governor Mike Parson made a new commitment to ensure that state government becomes a model employer of people with disabilities. At a site visit with community service provider Paraquad in St. Louis, Gov. Parson said, “Making Missouri a model employer is vital to ensuring we are offering individuals living with disabilities options of secure competitive employment in the workforce. My administration’s vision for developing our workforce includes each and every Missourian.”

Parson’s announcement echoes previous statements he has made about expanding jobs for Missourians with disabilities. “Workplaces welcoming of all people, including people with disabilities, are a critical part of the efforts to build an inclusive community and strong economy,” Parson wrote in October 2018 in a proclamation celebrating Disability Employment Awareness Month.