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Leadership Collective Newsletter — Spring 2022

88. Leadership Newsletter 2022 2 Published The Arc Amplified 1

JUST RELEASED: Leadership Collective Newsletter — Spring 2022

 

The Arc of Snohomish County published the Spring 2022 e-newsletter — recently re-branded as the “LEADERSHIP COLLECTIVE” quarterly publication — on July 5th.

The Leadership Collective shares stories of leadership and advocacy, as well as upcoming events and educational opportunities for parents and family caregivers, self-advocates, professionals and disability rights activists and allies. The publication focuses on disability visibility, advocacy, leadership and knowledge.

This most recent edition is Issue 2 of the 2022 newsletter series. It features an “Advocacy Spotlight” article on Laura Akers, a local self-advocate and Arc Trained Leader. The newsletter also includes information about a variety of upcoming leadership and advocacy training opportunities.

View the complete newsletter at http://tiny.cc/2022leadershipNewsletter2.

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Whitney Stohr is the Leadership & Independent Living Program Manager at The Arc of Snohomish County. She is passionate about advocating for medically complex children and children with disabilities and their families. She is a mom and medical caregiver herself, who is energized by working closely with other parent/family caregivers. She lives with her spouse and their four-year-old son Malachi in Lynnwood. Connect with her on Instagram @rollin.w.spinabifida. Contact: whitney@arcsno.org.

Disability Pride Month 2022

87. Disability History Month 2022 The Arc Amplified

Disability Pride Month 2022

In July, we recognize Disability Pride Month. This is the month when we celebrate disability and the disability community as a beautiful and integral part of our state and nation.

Disability Pride began as a day of celebration in 1990 — the same year the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law by then President George H. W. Bush. The first Disability Pride Day was held in Boston that year, and the celebration has since expanded nationwide and transformed into a month-long event. Today, cities across the country celebrate Disability Pride Month with parades, festivals, educational opportunities and other events.

As with all demographic groups, it is important to remember that the disability community is not a monolith. People with disabilities may hold dramatically different viewpoints and perspectives on topics, including the purpose, meaning and value of recognizing Disability Pride Month.

Shared below are various perspectives about Disability Pride Month from individuals with disabilities.

“The reason behind the month is a chance to share the joy and pride that disabled people can bring to their local and global communities. The disabled community is a vibrant part of society and makes up 15% of the population, and we are proud of that.” (Caroline Casey, writing for Forbes.com: “Disability Pride Month July — July 4, 2022)

AmeriDisability describes Disability Pride as ‘accepting and honoring each person’s uniqueness and seeing it as a natural and beautiful part of human diversity’ and connects it to the larger movement for disability justice.” (Krystal Jagoo, writing for verywellmind.com: “Understanding Disability Pride Month” ­— July 23, 2021)

“Disability Pride, much like LGBTQ+ Pride, is all about celebrating and reclaiming our visibility in public because people with disabilities have historically been pushed out of public spaces.”  —Laken Brooks, University of Florida graduate student, writer and digital storyteller. (Krystal Jagoo, writing for verywellmind.com: “Understanding Disability Pride Month” ­— July 23, 2021)

“I think that there is an importance in Disability Pride due to the consistent shame around the topic of disability in the first place. Choosing to be forthright about having a disability is considered ‘brave’ because there is a very tangible fear of being treated either differently interpersonally, or blocked professionally.”  —Taneasha White, Black queer writer and activist with chronic pain, based in Richmond, VA. (Krystal Jagoo, writing for verywellmind.com: “Understanding Disability Pride Month” ­— July 23, 2021)

“We should also see this as a moment to understand some people may not feel comfortable disclosing [their disability or showing pride in their disability]. We must respect that we are all on our own personal journeys and at various stages. If having this month can allow others to feel seen and have the confidence to be open with their disability, that is good enough.” (Caroline Casey, writing for Forbes.com: “Disability Pride Month July” — July 4, 2022)

“For me this month is not only about celebrating disabilities but remembering there’s going to be days where you won’t always love your disability, and that’s OK too.”  —Rebecca Cokley, three-time Presidential appointee, activist and author. (Gabriela Miranda, writing for USAToday.com: “A Chance to ‘Amplify One Another’: What is Disability Pride Month?” — July 4, 2021)

However you choose to recognize Disability Pride Month, I hope this month of July is one of self-expression, self-confidence and self-love.

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Whitney Stohr is the Leadership & Independent Living Program Manager at The Arc of Snohomish County. She is passionate about advocating for medically complex children and children with disabilities and their families. She is a mom and medical caregiver herself, who is energized by working closely with other parent/family caregivers. She lives with her spouse and their four-year-old son Malachi in Lynnwood. Connect with her on Instagram @rollin.w.spinabifida. Contact: whitney@arcsno.org.

New Disability Documentary: “Together They Were Stronger”

Together They Were Stronger The Arc Amplified

New Disability Documentary: “Together They Were Stronger”

On May 25th, 2022, at the University of Washington Haring Center for Inclusive Education, more than 300 participants joined together for the debut showing of the new documentary short-film Together They Were Stronger.

“Together They Were Stronger, produced by Thriving Communities, documents the story of how four Seattle women mounted a civil rights campaign to establish the first-ever disability rights law in the United States, [House Bill/HB 90].” (Read more: tinyurl.com/3tvjsxk5.)

 

Together They Were StrongerWashington Governor Dan Evans signed what became known as the Education for All Act in 1971. This law guaranteed for students with disabilities in Washington State the right to receive an education in state public schools. This law would eventually provide the framework for the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), which is now the legal foundation for special education and early intervention/birth-to-three services across the U.S.

 (Pictured: Gov. Dan Evans with Northwest Center founders Janet Taggart [left], Cecile Lindquist, Evelyn Chapman and Katie Dolan, alongside University of Washington law students Bill Dussault and George Edensword-Breck. Photo from Washington State Archives.)

 Following the premiere showing of the film on May 25th, a panel discussion and Q&A was held that featured panelists:

Watch the event recording and discussion panel online at youtu.be/fZeNth7l8UA.

Access the full event packet and additional information at tinyurl.com/269zz2nx.

Did you miss the debut showing? No problem! View it online at vimeo.com/714609859.

 

Check it out!! This film captures exactly what parent/caregiver leadership and advocacy can look like and how it can change our communities, our state and every state.

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Whitney Stohr is the Leadership & Independent Living Program Manager at The Arc of Snohomish County. She is passionate about advocating for medically complex children and children with disabilities and their families. She is a mom and medical caregiver herself, who is energized by working closely with other parent/family caregivers. She lives with her spouse and their four-year-old son Malachi in Lynnwood. Connect with her on Instagram @rollin.w.spinabifida. Contact: whitney@arcsno.org.

A Community Story: “Amazing Mamas,” Friendship and Fun

85. A Community Story Jill Ford The Arc Amplified

A Community Story: “Amazing Mamas,” Friendship and Fun

A STORY BY JILL FORD, ARC LEADER & SNOHOMISH COUNTY MOM:

 Jill Ford Amazing Mamas

Jill Ford is a Snohomish County mom of a child with a disability and a leader in her community.

Recently, Jill joined other mom friends for a weekend camping get-away. This group of moms met years ago through their connection to The Arc as parents and loved ones of people with disabilities. Each of these moms are trained Arc leaders and engaged members of their communities.

Here is the story Jill shared:

I had sooooo much fun last weekend camping with friends. It’s our 5th annual “Amazing Mamas” camping trip.

We all have a child with special needs or are very involved with loved ones with special needs. There really is nothing like the comfort of finding people who just get it, jump into help without asking, and aren’t afraid. Our glow stick parade through the campground was the best.

If you are a special needs family and are feeling isolated and lonely (which, if you are a special needs family, you probably feel this way) seek out your local Arc chapter.

Jill Ford Camping 1

 

My daughter attends Sibshops, and I have attended Mother’s Network meetings with The Arc of Snohomish County. It’s between those groups that I befriended other moms who “get it.” Both my daughter and I have made friends for life!

Jill Ford Camping 3

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127 E. Intercity Ave. Suite C
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(425) 258-2459