the advocacy monitor

independent living policy for wonks and wonkettes

Join Our Partner, the LEAD Center, for a Webinar on Best Practices in Employee Retention and Return-to-Work: Lessons Learned from Employers

LEAD Center Logo - www.leadcenter.orgDisability management and prevention is an important component in retaining talented employees and reducing turnover costs. In 2013, the LEAD Center studied a large successful U.S. Corporation to learn about and document effective retention and return-to-work policies and practices. This is a major focus for the U.S. Business Leadership Network as well as the Families and Work Institute, which just published their 2014 National Study of Employers. Join us for a review of lessons learned including:

  • Employer retention and return-to-work best practices.
  • How workforce professionals can partner with employers to promote employee retention and return to work.
  • How to identify employers with policies that support customized employment.
  • Target Audience:
  • Workforce development professionals, employers, policymakers, individuals and related stakeholders

Please note: This webinar will be captioned and a link to download the presentation will be sent to registrants prior to the webinar. To request any other reasonable accommodations, please contact Brittany Taylor at within 48 hours of the webinar.

Tomorrow: Organizer’s Forum on the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

You are invited to an *urgent* National Disability Leadership Alliance (NDLA) Organizer’s Forum call to discuss a state-based action for the Disability Treaty, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) during the August recess. Please join us to take action during this final push for September floor time! It’s now or never; people must get involved now for the CRPD to succeed!

  • Tuesday, August 19; 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. Eastern
  • Call in number: 213-342-3000
  • Code: 193134#
  • RSVP
  • Accommodations: The call will have real-time captioning (CART). Username: forum. Password: forum. Thank you to the NDLA for sponsoring captioning. If you need additional accommodations to participate, please email the Co-Chairs using the addresses below as soon as possible.


  • David Morrissey, United States International Council on Disabilities (USICD)
  • Kelly Buckland, National Council on Independent Living (NCIL)

So you can mark your calendars now, Organizer’s Forums are held on the Third Tuesday of every month. If you have suggestions for call topics or presenters for upcoming topics, please email them to or[Read more...]

An Update from the NCIL ADA / Civil Rights Subcommittee: 2014 Annual Conference Activities

The 2014 Annual Conference on Independent Living concluded an interesting year in advocacy for the NCIL ADA / Civil Rights Subcommittee. Co-Chairs Mike Bachhuber and Dara Baldwin were present for the entire conference and participated in the Legislative & Advocacy Update held on the day prior to the March, Rally & Hill Visits. In this session, they brought forth the information worked on throughout the 2013-2014 advocacy year. This information can be found in the NCIL Legislative & Advocacy Priority Booklet: Summer 2014 (PDF or plain text).

The Co-Chairs started with appreciations to all the Subcommittee members and the Task Force Co-Chairs. The Mental Health Task Force, Voting Rights Task Force, and Violence and Abuse Task Force are part of the advocacy work being done by NCIL through the ADA / Civil Rights Subcommittee. After hearing about this work, the Co-Chairs presented a strategy about what to discuss with members of Congress and discussed how to report back what happened in the meetings.

At the Conference, the Co-Chairs of this Subcommittee were available to discuss issues at the Regional Caucuses. They also attended the March, Rally and went to meetings on the Hill with members of Congress with other NCIL members. The message delivered to members of Congress was “thank you for the work done so far on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) but we need more!”

We know that we have much work to do with the Administration implementing the ADA, such as getting the US Department of Justice to better enforce many laws affecting people with disabilities. One area of concern is in the enforcement of voting rights for people with disabilities. We also encouraged Congress to continue to fund the many programs used to assist with enforcement and the civil rights of people with disabilities.

On the final day of the 2014 Conference, the Legislative & Advocacy report-out was done, and NCIL members went on 49 Senate visits and 145 House visits. This is amazing advocacy work! NCIL has a huge presence here in DC and we must continue this legacy.

If you are passionate about any of these issues, we welcome you to join the ADA / Civil Rights Subcommittee. Mike and Dara will remain as Co-Chairs and look forward to working with past and new members for the 2014 -2015 advocacy year. To join the Subcommittee, you must become an individual member of NCIL, then fill out the online form to join one of our committees.

One of the Co-Chairs will reply and get you involved. We want to thank all NCIL members for your great advocacy and we look forward to another year of continued work.

Dara Baldwin & Mike Bachhuber
Co-Chairs of the NCIL ADA / Civil Rights Subcommittee

Free Live Stream Seminar – Abuse Against People with Mental and/or Developmental Disabilities: Physical, Sexual and Verbal Abuse in Institutional or Community Settings

Members of NCIL’s Task Force on Violence & Abuse will be tuning in to the following live stream. We are proving this information for NCIL members who may also be interested in this topic (no endorsement implied).

This seminar will address the potential causes, ramifications, and preventive measures related to the abuse of people with mental and/or developmental disabilities.

Audience: The general public; people with disabilities, their doctors, nurses, facilities staff, caretakers, families, and friends; legal community; mental and social service providers

  • Monday, August 18, 2014; 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. (Note Time Zone)
  • Koret Auditorium, San Francisco Public Library
  • 100 Larkin St., San Francisco CA 94102
  • Enter at 30 Grove Street and proceed to lower level
  • Live stream instructions

List of Speakers:

  • Dr. Clarissa Kripke, Clinical Professor of Family and Community Medicine, UCSF School of Medicine; Director, Office of Developmental Primary Care  [Read more...]

National Disability Institute Launches 4th Annual My American Dream Video Contest

Source: National Disability Institute

Having a dream for your future and the chance to achieve it is a promise that truly makes America the land of opportunity. If you or someone you know has an American dream they want to achieve, National Disability Institute wants to hear about it.

Today, National Disability Institute is proud to launch its 4th Annual My American Dream – Voices of Americans with Disabilities Video Contest.

NDI want to hear from individuals with disabilities across country about their American dreams and the steps they are taking to achieve them. Whether it’s landing a dream job, starting a career, owning a home, going to college, starting a business or taking steps toward financial independence, National Disability Institute encourages people with disabilities to share their goals and show that all Americans want the same thing – a piece of the American dream.

In keeping with their mission to build a better economic future for all people with disabilities, the contest prize package will help the grand prize winner take steps toward living his/her American dream.

One Grand Prize Winner will receive:

  • $1,000
  • a digital tablet of his/her choice (*See Official Rules for details)
  • Sessions with a mentor to help the winner take positive steps toward achieving his/her dream  [Read more...]

CRPD Push: Your Senators Need to Hear from You This August!

Source: US International Council on Disabilities

Advocates rally for ratification of the CRPD in the 2014 NCIL March to Capitol Hill. Signs include: Ratify CRPD Now; CRPD – Don’t Believe the Myths; Disability Touches Everybody; Free Our People; Disability Rights for My Sister; and NCIL’s Banner: “Injustice Anywhere Is A Threat to Justice Everywhere” – Martin Luther King, Jr.It’s not over until it’s over! We need your help. We cannot stop now – the world is watching.

Your Senators need to continue to hear from you and know that you support the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)!

Show that the community is behind this treaty and that we want the process to keep moving forward to a Floor vote in September.

Visit USICD’s citizen action portal: to call your Senators!

They need to hear from the Independent Living community, or our movement will not succeed.

CIL-NET Presents… The New Frontier of Disability Rights: Introduction to Child-Custody Rights of Parents with Disabilities

CIL-NET Presents… A National Teleconference & Webinar

August 27, 2014; 3:00 – 4:30 p.m. Eastern

Register online or by using the printable registration form (PDF).

IL-NET Logo - CIL-NET + SILC-NETPresented by: Kelly Buckland, Ella Callow, and Megan Kirshbaum of the National Council on Independent Living and Through the Looking Glass

Among our most basic human rights is the right to have and raise children. Yet we know that parents with disabilities are regularly denied the opportunity to raise their children in their own homes, specifically because of their disability. Whether you or your consumers face discrimination by the courts, family members, landlords, or others, you’ll want to sign-up for this introductory presentation to learn the types of discrimination parents with disabilities typically face, and the resources, legal strategies, and other support you can provide to help them exercise their right to be proud parents with disabilities to their children.

Target Audience:

  • Any CIL staff who work directly with parents or prospective parents with disabilities.  [Read more...]

Financial Abuse and Exploitation: What to Look For – An Update from the NCIL Violence & Abuse Task Force

Unfortunately, financial abuse and exploitation of seniors and people with disabilities is on the rise. Financial exploitation is the unauthorized use of another person’s money for personal profit or gain and it is illegal in every state. Some examples are:

  • Cashing checks without authorization / permission
  • Forging another person’s signature
  • Misusing or stealing a person’s money or possessions
  • Coercing or deceiving a person into signing documents such as a contract or will
  • The improper use of conservatorship, guardianship, or power of attorney

People are usually surprised to find out who the most frequent abusers are, and sadly family and friends usually top the list. Others include caregivers (both paid and volunteer), professionals hired by the victim (i.e. contractors, lawyers, accountants), or strangers (either met in public or those who come to the home). So it is important to recognize the signs and symptoms of abuse:

  • Sudden changes in bank accounts or banking practices
  • Unexplained withdrawals of a lot of money by a person accompanying the victim
  • Adding names on a bank signature card  [Read more...]

Two New Infographics for Housing Advocacy

Infographic ThumbnailThe Research and Training Center (RTC) on Community Living is pleased to share two new infographics on housing for people with mobility disabilities. These one-page graphics illustrate the barriers to community participation that begin in the home. They also suggest ways to improve accessible housing options.

One infographic tells the story for the entire U.S., while the other spotlights conditions in rural housing. Researchers Craig Ravesloot and Lillie Greiman used data from the American Housing Survey to bring these issues to light.

The RTC hopes these resources are useful for your work and welcomes your feedback.

U.S. Department of Transportation Invites You to A National Town Hall Meeting: Moving from Uncertainty to Long-Term Transportation Investment

  • Department of Transportation logoFeaturing The Honorable Anthony Foxx, U.S. Transportation Secretary
  • Wednesday, August 6, 2014; 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
  • Please RSVP:


Join U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx as he highlights his vision for our nation’s transportation system.  During this virtual Town Hall meeting, the general public, as well as business leaders, transportation advocates, state and local government officials, concerned with the future of America’s transportation infrastructure will have the opportunity to dialogue with the Secretary about the future of our nation’s transportation investments.

Media are also welcome to watch the Town Hall, using the same RSVP instructions above.