UCP CALLS FOR COULTER APOLOGY

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:

Kaelan Richards: 202-973-7175, krichards@ucp.org

UCP CALLS FOR COULTER APOLOGY

Responds to pundit’s insulting and inexcusable comments on Twitter

Washington, DC (October 23, 2012) – United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) released the following statement today from President & CEO Stephen Bennett in response to pundit Ann Coulter’s offensive comments on Twitter over the last 24 hours:

"Ann Coulter’s use of an outdated and insulting term for people with disabilities is outrageous and inexcusable,” said Stephen Bennett, President & CEO of UCP. “She should apologize publicly, and she should be ashamed of herself."

 

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UCP ANNOUNCES SUCCESS OF FIRST WORLD CP DAY AND CHALLENGE

 International fundraising and fitness event raises over $700,000 

More than 5,800 people vote for World CP Day ideas to change the world

Washington, DC (October 17, 2012) – United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) has announced the final results from the first annual World CP Day and the World CP Challenge, an international awareness and fundraising campaign for people living with cerebral palsy.

World CP Day, held on September 4, marked the beginning of a month dedicated to ideas to make the world a better place for people living with cerebral palsy. 461 ideas were submitted to the “Change my world in 1 minute” contest, which challenged people to come up with ideas that would help individuals with cerebral palsy through improved mobility, independence, accessibility, communication or social connection. Over 5,800 votes were cast, and the World Cerebral Palsy Day Panel is now reviewing the proposals. The winners will be announced in March, 2013, and researchers, innovators and inventors will be given grants to turn their ideas into reality.

World CP Day also served as the kick-off for the World CP Challenge, a month-long event to raise awareness, encourage people to exercise, and raise money to support individuals living with cerebral palsy. Throughout September, teams from around the world exercised and raised donations to help people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities. A total of 6,999 people, including 2,183 in the United States, formed teams and entered their activities and fundraising efforts on the World CP Challenge website—and raised a total of $774,399 worldwide.

“The success of our first World CP Day and the World CP Challenge is an incredible achievement, and I am so proud of the efforts of all of those who participated. From innovative ideas submitted to the “Change my world in 1 minute” campaign, to the amount of donations raised, the dedication and commitment throughout the entire month of September was extraordinary,” said Stephen Bennett, President & CEO of UCP. “I applaud the efforts of our teams around the world, and look forward to the exciting work to be done as we continue to strive to ensure that people living with cerebral palsy can live their lives to the fullest.”

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About United Cerebral Palsy

United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) educates, advocates and provides support services through an affiliate network to ensure a life without limits for people with a spectrum of disabilities. Together with nearly 100 affiliates, UCP has a mission to advance the independence, productivity and full citizenship of people with disabilities by supporting more than 176,000 children and adults every day—one person at a time, one family at a time. UCP works to enact real change—to revolutionize care, raise standards of living and create opportunities—impacting the lives of millions living with disabilities. For more than 60 years, UCP has worked to ensure the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in every facet of society. Together, with parents and caregivers, UCP will continue to push for the social, legal and technological changes that increase accessibility and independence, allowing people with disabilities to dream their own dreams, for the next 60 years, and beyond. For more information, please visit www.ucp.org.

 

UCP: CONGRESSIONAL REPORT SHOWS NEED FOR IMMEDIATE CHANGE

 UCP: CONGRESSIONAL REPORT SHOWS NEED FOR IMMEDIATE CHANGE 

Office of Compliance highlights inaccessibility of Capitol buildings 

Washington, DC (October 19, 2012) – United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) released the following statement today in response to the Office of Compliance’s Biennial Report on the 111th Congress, “Americans with Disabilities Act Inspections Relating to Public Services and Accommodations.”

The report, which is required by the Congressional Accountability Act and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), examined the accessibility of the House Office Buildings, as well as bathrooms throughout the Capitol complex. The findings show that while progress has been made in making the buildings more accessible, there are still significant problems:

·      93% of curb ramps on the sidewalks are not in compliance with ADA Accessibility Standards.

·      54% of the total exterior pathway barriers are a safety risk for people with disabilities.

·      None of the bathrooms inspected met ADA standards.

“For the 57 million Americans living with disabilities today, this is more than just a report— this is stark reminder that 22 years after the passage of the ADA, the fight for basic civil rights is not over. All Americans should have the ability to access their representatives and attend and testify at hearings, but it is clear that this is not the case. We urge Congress to act immediately to correct the safety issues, and work to ensure that all of the problems are fixed,” said Stephen Bennett, President & CEO of UCP. “The findings in this report are very disappointing, and show how much progress is still needed to ensure that all Americans have the same rights and opportunities.”

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About United Cerebral Palsy

United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) educates, advocates and provides support services through an affiliate network to ensure a life without limits for people with a spectrum of disabilities. Together with nearly 100 affiliates, UCP has a mission to advance the independence, productivity and full citizenship of people with disabilities by supporting more than 176,000 children and adults every day—one person at a time, one family at a time. UCP works to enact real change—to revolutionize care, raise standards of living and create opportunities—impacting the lives of millions living with disabilities. For more than 60 years, UCP has worked to ensure the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in every facet of society. Together, with parents and caregivers, UCP will continue to push for the social, legal and technological changes that increase accessibility and independence, allowing people with disabilities to dream their own dreams, for the next 60 years, and beyond. For more information, please visit www.ucp.org.

UCP ANNOUNCES NEW TRUSTEES, NATIONAL LEADERS

 NORTH CAROLINA ATTORNEY TAKES HELM AS NEW CHAIR

Washington, DC (October 15, 2012) – United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) has elected four new members of its national Board of Trustees, and has elected four leaders to serve as officers of the Board.

The Board of Trustees plays a critical role at UCP, helping to guide the organization and its efforts to educate, advocate and provide support to people with disabilities across the country. With 18 members, including four officers, the Board is a diverse and active group that works together to move UCP forward toward its goal of creating a life without limits for people living with disabilities. 

Selection of Officers

Edward G. “Woody” Connette, an attorney in Charlotte, North Carolina, will lead the organization’s Board of Trustees as its new Chair, replacing outgoing Chair Bruce Merlin Fried, the DC-based Managing Partner of law firm SNR Denton.  Connette has long had an interest in public policy and litigation related to disabilities, health care and mental health. In his legal work, he has fought to protect the rights of people living with disabilities and challenged the living conditions and institutionalization practices in North Carolina and Tennessee. He is involved in several professional organizations and has also served on the Executive Board and as President of the National Patient Advocate Foundation. Connette’s volunteer work with disability groups stretches back more than twenty years, and he played a critical role in the merger of UCP and Easter Seals affiliates in North Carolina and went on to become Board Chair for the newly created Easter Seals/ UCP North Carolina and Virginia.

“On behalf of United Cerebral Palsy, and all of our affiliates, I am delighted to welcome Woody as our new Chair for our Board of Trustees,” said Stephen Bennett, President & CEO of United Cerebral Palsy. “Woody has been a valued part of UCP for more than two decades, and his commitment and dedication to bettering the lives of people living with disabilities is inspiring. We look forward to his leadership in the years ahead.”

“It is an immense privilege to be selected for this position with such a great organization,” said Connette. “United Cerebral Palsy is internationally recognized as a leader in the disability community, and I will do my best to help create a better day for those living with disabilities every day.”

Connette is joined by three other volunteer leaders, including:

·       Ian Ridlon, who has been selected as the organization’s new vice chair.  Ridlon is general counsel and director of Legal Services at the Rhode Island Interlocal Risk Management Trust. Mr. Ridlon has been involved with United Cerebral Palsy on the state and national level for over 15 years.  On the state level, he has been the Board Chair for several terms and has also chaired two other non-profit organizations created by the affiliate that provide independent living facilities for low income individuals with developmental disabilities. On the national level, he has previously served on the Board of Trustees and is a recipient of the 2004 Chairperson’s Award.  He has also served on numerous committees and was previously the chair of the nominating committee and the by-laws committee. and has served as a Board member for UCP of Rhode Island

·       Mark Boles will serve as the organization’s treasurer.  He currently serves as Chief Executive Officer of Baylor Institute for Rehabilitation at Frisco (Texas). With nearly 30 years experience as a healthcare executive, he has been involved with United Cerebral Palsy on the local, state, and national levels for more than 20 years, having received the Ethel Hausman Volunteer of the Year Award in 2003 and the UCP Chairman’s Award in 2004.

·       Pamela Talkin will serve as secretary of the Board of Trustees.  Talkin was sworn in on July 16, 2001 as the tenth Marshal of the Supreme Court of the United States.  Talkin is the first woman to hold the position. She was elected to UCP Board of Trustees in 2011.

New Members

These new leaders are joined by five new distinguished Trustees who were elected at UCP’s international conference this past April.  They include:

·       Michael Burke Jr., a co-founder and principal of Thrive Office, an innovative, shared workplace community based in New York City.

·       Ruth Gullerud, who retired in May as the Executive Director of UCP of West Central Wisconsin, in Eau Claire, where she has worked since 1977. 

·       Melvin “Chip” Hurley, an executive with Berkeley Research Group, LLC, and former chair of the board of UCP of Central Maryland.

·       Linda Maguire, co-founder and consultant with Maguire Associates, a research-based consulting firm that has served educational clients around the world for the past 29 years. She is currently the vice chair of UCP MetroBoston and has received much recognition for her work with the UCP network.

·       Rob White, the Chief Executive Officer of Cerebral Palsy Alliance in Sydney, Australia, who has decades of leadership experience in global civil rights movement for people with disabilities.

“We are grateful to these new officers and Trustees for agreeing to serve United Cerebral Palsy in such an important leadership role,” Bennett said.  “Our Trustees are one of the main reasons that UCP is able to serve hundreds of thousands of people with disabilities each year, and we are excited to begin a new year with their leadership contributions.”

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UCP RESPONDS TO NEW REPORT ON RIGHTS OF PARENTS WITH DISABILITIES

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:
Kaelan Richards: 202-973-7175, krichards@ucp.org

UCP RESPONDS TO NEW REPORT ON RIGHTS OF PARENTS WITH DISABILITIES

 

National Council on Disability’s report highlights vulnerabilities, flaws in current system

 

Washington, DC (October 5, 2012) – United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) issued the following statement today in response to the National Council on Disability (NCD)’s new report, “Rocking the Cradle: Ensuring the Rights of Parents with Disabilities and Their Children.”

NCD’s report examines the challenges faced by the more than 4 million parents living with disabilities in raising their families. The report identifies parents with disabilities as the “only distinct community of Americans who must struggle to retain custody of their children,” and that removal rates run as high as 80 percent among parents with a psychiatric or intellectual disability. The report details the hardships faced by parents struggling to keep their children, adopt children, or even accessing reproductive assistance and makes recommendations for how to both states and the federal government can address each.

Specifically, the NCD report recommends Congress pass legislation similar to the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) of 1978, which was enacted to help keep American Indian children with their families, and would help to protect the rights of parents with disabilities and their families. Alternatively, the NCD suggests an amendment to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other laws relating to child welfare, custody, adopted and reproductive technologies.  

“This report highlights an awful truth: parents with disabilities are facing tremendous challenges and discrimination as they try to raise their families. The situation is appalling, and action needs to be taken,” said Stephen Bennett, President & CEO of UCP. “We commend the National Council on Disability for this report and for their efforts to bring this unfair and unjust treatment to an end. UCP looks forward to working together with NCD and other organizations to transform our laws and ensure that the rights of all American families are protected.”

 

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About United Cerebral Palsy
United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) educates, advocates and provides support services through an affiliate network to ensure a life without limits for people with a spectrum of disabilities. Together with nearly 100 affiliates, UCP has a mission to advance the independence, productivity and full citizenship of people with disabilities by supporting more than 176,000 children and adults every day—one person at a time, one family at a time. UCP works to enact real change—to revolutionize care, raise standards of living and create opportunities—impacting the lives of millions living with disabilities. For more than 60 years, UCP has worked to ensure the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in every facet of society. Together, with parents and caregivers, UCP will continue to push for the social, legal and technological changes that increase accessibility and independence, allowing people with disabilities to dream their own dreams, for the next 60 years, and beyond. For more information, please visit www.ucp.org.

UNITED CEREBRAL PALSY JOINS BROAD EFFORT TO OBSERVE NATIONAL DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT AWARENESS MONTH

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

CONTACT:
Alicia Kubert Smith: 202.973.7168, akubertsmith@ucp.org  

UNITED CEREBRAL PALSY JOINS BROAD EFFORT TO OBSERVE NATIONAL DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT AWARENESS MONTH 

 

Nationwide campaign will take place in October 

 

Washington, DC (October 1, 2012) – United Cerebral Palsy today announced its participation in National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM), an annual awareness campaign that takes place each October. The purpose of National Disability Employment Awareness Month is to educate about disability employment issues and celebrate the many and varied contributions of America’s workers with disabilities.

The history of NDEAM traces back to 1945, when Congress enacted a law declaring the first week in October each year "National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week." In 1962, the word "physically" was removed to acknowledge the employment needs and contributions of individuals with a spectrum of disabilities. In 1988, Congress expanded the week to a month and changed the name to National Disability Employment Awareness Month. 

"Employers who ensure that inclusive workplace policies and practices are woven into the fabric and culture of the organization create an environment that encourages all workers — including those of us with disabilities — to work to their full capacity and contribute fully to the organization’s success," said Kathy Martinez, assistant secretary of labor for disability employment policy when announcing this year’s National Disability Employment Awareness Month theme, which is "A Strong Workforce is an Inclusive Workforce: What Can YOU Do?" The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) leads National Disability Employment Awareness Month.

“United Cerebral Palsy is proud to support National Disability Employment Awareness Month. It is important to break the preconceived notions that often hinder creating an inclusive workforce. Individuals with disabilities bring many contributions to the workplace and together we can help break down barriers to employment. A diverse workforce is advantageous to both the employees and the employer,” said Stephen Bennett, President & CEO of UCP.

Employers and employees in all industries can learn more about how to participate in National Disability Employment Awareness Month and ways they can promote its messages — during October and throughout the year — by visiting the ODEP website at www.dol.gov/odep/. Additional employment resources can be found on the UCP website, and throughout the month special events and webinars will be promoted on the UCP’s Twitter and Facebook page.

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About United Cerebral Palsy
United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) educates, advocates and provides support services through an affiliate network to ensure a life without limits for people with a spectrum of disabilities. Together with nearly 100 affiliates, UCP has a mission to advance the independence, productivity and full citizenship of people with disabilities by supporting more than 176,000 children and adults every day—one person at a time, one family at a time. UCP works to enact real change—to revolutionize care, raise standards of living and create opportunities—impacting the lives of millions living with disabilities. For more than 60 years, UCP has worked to ensure the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in every facet of society. Together, with parents and caregivers, UCP will continue to push for the social, legal and technological changes that increase accessibility and independence, allowing people with disabilities to dream their own dreams, for the next 60 years, and beyond. For more information, please visit www.ucp.org.