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Category: Republicans

Joe Biden’s Message to Voters with Disabilities: “Dignity and Opportunity”

Washington, D.C., June 29 – Former Vice President and Democratic Presidential Nominee Joe Biden had a clear message for the disability community this past week: “Everyone is entitled to a life of dignity and opportunity.” In a video message played at POWER: the Disability Vote, a national, nonpartisan Disability & Election Virtual Summit hosted by the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD), Biden spoke about his legislative record in the Senate and his vision for advancing disability rights if elected President. 

Speaking of his legislative efforts as a Senator from Delaware, Biden talked about working on the passage of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 in his “first year in the Senate.” This law, which specifically prohibited “discrimination on the basis of disability in programs conducted by federal agencies,” created the legal environment that directly lead to the mobilization of the disability rights movement. Biden then talked about the passage of the Fair Housing Amendments Act (FHAA) of 1988. This law explicated added people with disabilities to the categories of people protected from discrimination “in housing sales, rentals or financing.” Lastly, he spoke with great pride about being counted among the cosponsors of the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990. 

Stimulus Package Becomes Law – Here’s What It Means for People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., March 27 – President Trump signed into law today the $2 trillion-dollar emergency stimulus aimed at propping up the economy during the current crisis. This law is unprecedented in its scope and is meant to help our nation respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Even now, government agencies are going to work to implement the new law.

Millions of Americans living with disabilities are wondering what this new law means for them and whether they will see any benefit. The short answer is yes, but how far the law will go to help people with disabilities who are uniquely at-risk to the impact of the virus remains an open question.

New Battleground Poll Data Shows Disability Community is Large and Electorally Contested

Washington, D.C., March 19 – New polling data of the battleground states shows that the disability community is large and electorally contested, but the issues they care about most are not being sufficiently addressed.

The phone poll of 1,000 registered voters across 16 presidential and Senate battleground states was conducted by Stan Greenberg, Ph.D., and the polling firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research (GQRR), on behalf of the disability inclusion organization RespectAbility. The data was released on a webinar earlier today. The memocross-tab data, and PowerPoint are available to download now. The webinar recording will be available to watch with captions early next week.

Presidential Candidates’ Website Accessibility Improves but More Work Still Needed

Four Candidates – Biden, Booker, Castro and Yang – Have “Mostly Accessible” Websites

Washington, D.C., Dec. 19 – Nearly six 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 or have low vision, an update finds that still none of these websites – Democrat or Republican – are fully accessible. However, the Miami Lighthouse for the Blind found that many of the candidates’ websites do show improvements in accessibility.

The organization issued a challenge for the candidates in June: “ensure their websites are fully ADA compliant and immediately put an accessibility statement on their page.” Since then, both Entrepreneur Andrew Yang and Vice President Joe Biden’s have been deemed “mostly accessible” and are the only candidates who have qualified for the December debate to have scored higher than a 3.00 out of 4.00. 

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.…