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Warren: “Non-negotiable” For Campaign to Be Fully Inclusive of People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., June 17 – Since she began working as a special education teacher, Sen. Elizabeth Warren says she understood “how important it is to live a life of independence and dignity.” Responding to a question posed to all of the viable 2020 presidential candidates by RespectAbility, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that fights stigmas and advances opportunities for people with disabilities, Sen. Warren said she will “always stand up for the policies that help make that possible for Americans with disabilities.”

Warren’s campaign participated in a nonpartisan briefing with RespectAbility on this topic. Seven other Democratic presidential campaigns also participated in such a briefing: Biden, Booker, Inslee, Klobuchar, Gillibrand, Sanders and Yang. All viable campaigns were invited to participate in a general briefing or to schedule a briefing, and all are welcome to request a future briefing.

“On our campaign, representation will always reflect the true diversity of Americans, including diversity of ability,” Sen. Warren said, adding that her campaign has a dedicated staff member prioritizing outreach to the disability community “so that our campaign is deliberately listening and taking intentional steps towards inclusion.”

She also outlined specific steps her campaign is taking: “hiring individuals with disabilities, making sure our offices and event spaces are accessible, prioritizing phone banks alongside canvasses so that people of all mobilities can participate, ensuring that all photographs on our website have alt-text and that our videos include captions, and asking event attendees about their accessibility needs and reaching out to those individuals directly to confirm what they need so that we can accommodate them the day of the event.”

Each campaign has been asked to respond to the same question. We are presenting Sen. Warren’s response in full below:


Q: How will you be ensuring that your campaign fully includes people with disabilities and intentionally speaks to people with disabilities?

A: My first job out of college was teaching kids with special needs at a public elementary school, so I understand how important it is to live a life of independence and dignity. I will always stand up for the policies that help make that possible for Americans with disabilities. Because of this experience, I believe that universal inclusion begins within our campaign. I pledge that my campaign will be fully inclusive of people with disabilities. For me, it’s not negotiable. On our campaign, representation will always reflect the true diversity of Americans, including diversity of ability. We have a dedicated staff member who prioritizes outreach to the disability community so that our campaign is deliberately listening and taking intentional steps towards inclusion. Some of the steps we’ve already taken include: hiring individuals with disabilities, making sure our offices and event spaces are accessible, prioritizing phone banks alongside canvasses so that people of all mobilities can participate, ensuring that all photographs on our website have alt-text and that our videos include captions, and asking event attendees about their accessibility needs and reaching out to those individuals directly to confirm what they need so that we can accommodate them the day of the event. Addressing the needs of PwD has long been a policy priority of mine in the Senate from introducing the bipartisan Audiology Patient Choice Act to passing an amendment to the Elementary and Secondary Education Act reauthorization to ensure that students with disabilities are able to use assistive technology to access assessments. I intend to continue this legacy on this next campaign. Because, right now, Washington works great if you’re a billionaire. It works great if you’re a giant multinational corporation. It works great for the wealthy and the well-connected, and it’s not working for the rest of America, including Americans with disabilities. And I’m in this fight all the way to fix it.


RespectAbility is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that fights stigmas and advances opportunities for people with disabilities. RespectAbility does not rate or endorse candidates. View more coverage of 2020 presidential candidates here: https://therespectabilityreport.org/category/2020-campaign. To learn more about the organization, visit our website at www.respectability.org.

Published in2020 CampaignDemocrats

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