The medical, educational, and social service communities give labels to people such as “autism,” “cerebral palsy,” “dementia,” and “macular degeneration.” These labels can be useful for understanding and helping people, but a person is not his or her label. Barbara Newman writes,...
Looking for some practical ideas to make your congregation more accessible? Find 57 of them here from the Episcopal Disability Network.
Sharon, a member of our church, asked me what I do for a living. I told her that I help churches learn how to include people with disabilities in their life and ministry.
Her eyes brightened, and she asked me how.
I eagerly told her a few ideas, but there was more to say. So for...
A new documentary, "A Place for All: Faith and Community for Persons with Disabilities" by the Interfaith Broadcasting Commission, is to begin airing on ABC affiliates December 6. Please call your local ABC affiliate and ask them to air "A Place for All." See Interfaith Broadcasting Commission for more information.
December 3 has been designated by the United Nations as the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. Read a snapshot here. What can you do in your church, your home, your place of employment do to recognize this day?
Empathy is a perspective, a decision, and a skill to reach outside of yourself to connect with someone else. Empathy puts the Golden Rule into action.
Ever wonder what it's like to live with autism, or have a child with autism. Here's a "humanizing article" as my friend calls it: The Anti-Socialite: Life with an Asperger's Child.
The National Association of Evangelicals produced a document in 2004 called “For the Health of the Nation.” It is not so much about health care reform as about the health of the United States as a nation. The scope of the document reaches far beyond the “traditional” evangelical issues of abortion and marriage. These are included, but other matters of justice feature prominently as well. Fortunately, people with disabilities were not forgotten by the authors.
I read today about Sir James Dyson’s newest product, the air multiplier, which blows a lot of air at constant rate without any visible moving blades. It’s just a big hoop atop a base. It sounds amazing. Dyson and his company have made their living by thinking outside the box about commonplace things.
On October 7, Speaker of the US House, Nancy Pelosi, spoke at a ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda when a statue of Helen Keller was unveiled. Among other things, Pelosi said, “As Helen Keller said: 'My sympathies are with all who struggle for justice.' In her lifetime, Helen Keller worked for opportunity for people with disabilities, for racial equality, and for the rights of women.”
Although we North Americans are getting better at emphasizing diversity in the workplace, people with disabilities tend to be the last ones that diversity practitioners seek to recruit for jobs. I ran across these reflections by Rob McInness today on why that might be so. He writes,
The US Dept. of Justice released results of a first-ever study of crimes against people with disabilities. The sad and not-surprising finding is that people with disabilities are one and one half times as likely to be victims of crime as people without disabilities.
Meditating on Luke 9:50 this morning. Jesus said, “Whoever is not against you is for you.” Sometimes advocacy gets wearisome. It seems like one has to keep pushing constantly to see movement in inclusion of people with disabilities in churches, society, and other people’s lives. My temptation over time is to see most people as being against the work that Disability Concerns stands for. But Jesus pulls me up short on that temptation. “No,” he says, “Whoever is not against you is for you.” That turns the tide. Since most people are not against inclusion, they must be for it.
When he asked about my work, I explained that I help churches learn ways to include people with disabilities in the life of the church.