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ADAPT activist are in Washington DC September 19-22

ADAPT activist are in Washington DC September 19-22 to demand, through direct action, that states don't cut funding to home and community base services.

What exactly is ADAPT?

ADAPT is a national grass-roots community that organizes disability rights activists to engage in nonviolent direct action, including civil disobedience, to assure the civil and human rights of people with disabilities to live in freedom.  -- ADAPT.org

 

I get interesting responses when I mention ADAPT to someone, particularly someone who has very little direct experience with ADAPT except for what they see on TV. More often then not, these people ask me something like if I am talking about those radical people in wheelchairs who chain themselves to fences?

Of course I tell them the truth: It's not just people in wheelchairs, (All kinds of people from all walks of life both with and without disabilities are members of ADAPT)  and ADAPT isn't about chaining yourself to a fence. (Not saying this could not happen, just saying that isn't what it is about.)

What is it about then?

That's simple, it is about assuring the civil and human rights of people with disabilities to live in freedom. 

But they engage in nonviolent direct action.

Hello, non-violent direct action is just that nonviolent.  We are talking about people who are trying to protect the basic civil rights of not only themselves, but all of our citizens.  You might not be worried about whether or not you are going be put in a nursing home now, but that could change in an instant, my guess is that you will be grateful that there are activist out there willing to become directly involved.

But ADAPT is radical.

Okay, lets take a look at some of ADAPT's "Radical" Notions:

  • People with disabilities are people and have value.
  • People with disabilities are like everyone else and in that they have basic civil and human rights, and like everyone else they have a right to actively work to protect those rights.
  • Home and Community based services (that are often cheaper then nursing home services) need to be available to people with disabilities so that they have a choice to live in their own homes and not nursing homes (which cost more)
  • People with disabilities need to have access to basic resources like housing and transportation just like people without disabilities.  (It is because of ADAPT efforts we got lifts on buses.)  So that they can live their lives and participate and contribute to our society and their communities.
  • People with disabilities are an important part of our society (and a valid voting block) whose needs should not be ignored.

If those are radical notions seems to me that it would benefit us all if everyone became more radical.  After all while people may discriminate against disabilities, disabilities themselves do not discriminate.  At some point everyone who is lucky enough to live long enough will acquire some type of disability. 

Wouldn't it be nice if when you get to that point in your life the services that you needed to be able to stay in your own home were available so that you would have a choice not to go into a nursing home?

That is what ADAPT is all about.

 To learn about ADAPT's current campaign Defending our Freedom visit  http://www.adapt.org/adapt-campaign.php.

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