Archive for November, 2016

Now More than Ever – On Giving Tuesday: Fund Our Voice!

People with disabilities need their voices heard in Washington and Madison.

Since the election it has become clear that there are big changes on the horizon for people with disabilities. Access to healthcare, Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security and Home and Community Based Services are all at stake.

Now, more than ever it is important that people with disabilities have a voice in how, when, and if programs and policies are changed.

At Disability Rights Wisconsin we empower people with disabilities to exercise the full extent of their rights and pursue the greatest possible quality of life.

We work in coalition with people with disabilities, other agencies, and advocates, to ensure that the rights of people with disabilities are protected.

We give voice to their concerns with state and national policymakers – and we have incredibly successful.

This year, Disability Rights Wisconsin strengthened the rights of children with disabilities in the child protective services system through legislative advocacy.

In the coming months we will be working hard to maintain the hard won gains and resist changes that will exclude or segregate people with disabilities or weaken programs that support them.

Join our mission! Now more than ever — FUND OUR VOICE.

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Disability Rights Wisconsin – Informational Session and Board Listening Session – Wausau – Dec. 2

WHEN: Friday, Dec. 2, 2016 from 4:00 to 6:30 PM

Informational Session: 4:00 – 4:30
Learn about the mission and advocacy work of DRW
Presented by DRW Executive Director Dan Idzikowski

Board Listening Session: 4:30 – 6:30
Help shape our advocacy plans for the future. Come and speak or just listen to what others in your community have to say.

WHERE: North Central Technical College
1000 W. Campus Drive, Wausau 54401
In the Center for Business and Industry – at the north end of the campus—Room #110

BUS: Served by Wausau Metro Ride – Route B
Last stop/pickup at the College bus stop is at 6:15.
All buses run until 6:30.
For rider information call 715-842-9287 or click here.

PARKING: Free parking available by the building—use Lot D

If you need language translation or an accommodation, please contact Mary Sykes at 608-267-0214 or mary.sykes@drwi.org by Nov. 21.

Sign language interpreters will be present.

To submit written comments, email kristine.beck@drwi.org or mail to DRW, 131 W. Wilson St., Suite 700, Madison, WI 53703.

For a flyer with details, click here.

Disability Rights Wisconsin Mourns the Passing of Extraordinary Disability Advocate, Olivia Quigley

Olivia Quigley holding special world olympics medalWisconsin’s Special Olympics World Games gold medalist and outstanding disability advocate, Olivia Quigley, has died at the age of 25. Olivia had been diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015.

Olivia was adopted at the age of 3 from China by her parents, Dan and Judy- a former Disability Rights Wisconsin board member. Olivia had a diagnosis of autism, lived in her own apartment and was a success story for the Project Search program that supports young people with disabilities in community jobs. She excelled at her job at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin and was a role model for countless other young people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

In 2015 ESPN named Olivia to their Impact25 list of influential women in sports and she received the inaugural Inspiration Award. She was also honored as a Hometown Hero by the Wisconsin State Assembly and received a standing ovation on the floor of the Assembly.

You can read more about Olivia’s extraordinary life and advocacy for people with disabilities here: Remembering Special Olympics World Games gold medalist Olivia Quigley

Disability Rights Wisconsin shares condolences with the Quigley family and honors Olivia’s memory.

US Department of Justice Issues Guidance on ADA Integrated Employment Mandate

The United States Department of Justice this week issued a “Statement on Application of the Integration Mandate of Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Olmstead v. L.C. to State and Local Governments’ Employment Service Systems for Individuals with Disabilities.”

The Justice Department clarified that the Americans with Disabilities Act’s integration mandate applies in all aspects of a person’s life, including the employment context. “The civil rights of persons with disabilities, including individuals with mental illness, intellectual or developmental disabilities, or physical disabilities, are violated by unnecessary segregation in a wide variety of settings, including in segregated employment, vocational, and day programs.”

As the Protection and Advocacy system for Wisconsin charged with advancing the civil rights of all people with disabilities, Disability Rights Wisconsin has consistently advocated for state and local governments to ensure that taxpayer funding is being used to advance, and not impede, individuals with disabilities’ right to live, work, and recreate in the most integrated environment possible. Click here to read the rest of US Department of Justice Issues Guidance on ADA Integrated Employment Mandate »