Thursday, November 8, 2012

The President Has Been Reelected. What Now for People with Disabilities?

"I believe we can keep the promise of our founders, the idea that if you’re willing to work hard, it doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from or what you look like or where you love. It doesn’t matter whether you’re black or white or Hispanic or Asian or Native American or young or old or rich or poor, able, disabled, gay or straight, you can make it here in America if you’re willing to try."
--President Obama's acceptance speech, Nov. 7, 2012
Here are some reactions from disability advocates.

From American Training, Inc.:
"Obama's Victory Speech Includes People with Disabilities. Will His Policies Do the Same?" Chris Lenois writes, "Yes, people with disabilities are part of the President’s vision of the American dream. Obama used practically the same inclusive language at the start of his 2008 acceptance speech and I’m sure many other U.S. Presidents also have done so. Now comes the work to make the vision a reality."But the election is over, mercifully. Now it is time for the country that President Obama called 'the most diverse nation on Earth' early Wednesday morning to open its arms a little wider and embrace the more than 50 million Americans with disabilities who walk among us."
From the American Association for People with Disabilities:
"AAPD looks forward to working with President Obama, his administration, and Members of Congress to continue to expand employment opportunities, improve access to affordable health care, and increase independence for people with disabilities." AAPD President & CEO Mark Perriello said, “President Obama has a strong record on disability issues. I am confident that President Obama’s second term offers an opportunity for significant progress for Americans with disabilities.” Read more.

From Autism Speaks:

In a blog post titled "The Election is Over. Now What?" Shelley Hendrix of Autism Speaks writes: "Autism doesn’t take a break for the holidays. It doesn’t have a lame duck session. It doesn’t conduct business as usual until it is sworn into office....Our community understands that autism is an urgent public health crisis. Over the next couple of months, we need to continue our 1 in 88 Can’t Wait campaign to ensure that our family members, friends and most importantly, our elected officials, understand that as well....

"We have a lot to do....We must unite this community. We must unite our voices. We can make a difference and we can make change, but that change that we all want to see will come faster when we work together. We can do that. We just have to make a commitment to ourselves and our children that we will.

"The Autism Votes advocacy program makes it easy for you to engage to affect change at the state and federal level for people with autism and their families. Sign up today at and when we send you an email, take five minutes to open it then make the call, send the email and ask your friends to help you make a difference."

See also "Following Election, Disability Advocates Fear Budget Cuts," from

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