Advocacy for Disability Rights

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The 25th Anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was celebrated on July 26, 2015. From the mid to late 1960s to the present day, organizations throughout the country have fought for equal rights for all people with disabilities, and the fight continues to this day. While the ADA has made strides to ensure civil rights through legislation, there is still more to be done.

One of the ways that individuals can help to promote policy changes is to engage in advocacy. One such way of engaging is by following legislation that either directly or indirectly affects people with disabilities at a local, state, and federal level. Some organizations such as the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) have action alerts that will keep track of these bills and provide public comment to your Representatives in support of or opposition to said legislation. NCIL’s example is The Advocacy Monitor, which can be subscribed to via email.

There are other ways to follow current legislation and other ways to advocate for civil rights. Providing public comment and testimony is one example. For more information on ways to advocate or other ways to support all people with disabilities, stay tuned for our video series on our YouTube channel.


Suggested Further Reading:

  • Disabled Rights: American Disability Policy and the Fight for Equality by Jacqueline Vaughn Switzer
  • The Disability Rights Movement: From Charity to Confrontation by Doris Zames Fleischer
  • Disability Rights Advocacy Online: Voice, Empowerment and Global Connectivity by Filippo Trevisan
  • What Have We Done: An Oral History of the Disability Rights Movement by Fred Pelka
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