Monday, September 18, 2017

#CripTheVote Chat on Education

#CripTheVote Twitter Chat - Education - September 19, 2017 7 PM ET - Guest hosts: @DrSubini @EndInvisibility @SaveRyanWhiteD

Education has long been pushed as a silver bullet for Social Justice issues, yet many in our community have found and continue to find that the education system is often a barrier to disabled equality and worse actively contributes to our inequality. It is too big a topic for this chat to be comprehensive, but the chat will examine some of the very complex issues our community is engaged with in education.

How to Participate

When it’s time, search #CripTheVote on Twitter for the series of live tweets under the ‘Latest’ tab for the full conversation.

If you don’t use Twitter, you can follow along in real time here:

If you are overwhelmed by the volume of tweets and only want to see the chat’s questions so you can respond to them, check the @DisVisibility account. Each question will tweeted there 5-6 minutes apart.

Check out this explanation of how to participate in a Twitter chat by Ruti Regan:

Check out this captioned ASL explanation of how to participate in a chat by @behearddc -

Welcome to the #CripTheVote chat on education. Please remember to use the hashtag when you tweet.
We are pleased to have guest hosts @DrSubini @EndInvisibility @SaveRyanWhiteD with us today!
If you respond to a question such as Q1, your tweet should follow this format: “A1 [your message] #CripTheVote”
Q1. What do you see as the top issues facing disabled people at all levels of the Education system? #CripTheVote

Q2. How did Disability & the experience of Ableism shape your educational experience? #CripTheVote

Q3. IDEA has been relatively unchanged since its Introduction in 1975 is it time for an overhaul? What would you change? #CripTheVote

Q4. How do ableism and racism work together in our school systems?

There is overwhelming evidence that Disabled students of color are the primary targets of the school to prison pipeline #CripTheVote

Disabled students of color are also far more likely to be disciplined & removed from school for same offenses as their peers. #CripTheVote

Q5. The administration is fighting for more charter schools. How will this affect disabled students? What can we do? #CripTheVote

Deaf students often come into school w. language development far behind non-Deaf peers a gap which is compounded once in school #CripTheVote

Q6. What are the factors that lead to Deaf students not being kindergarten ready and how can this be addressed? #CripTheVote

Q7. Has a focus on inclusive settings kept us from developing more inclusive teaching strategies? If so what do we need to do? #CripTheVote

Q8 What should we think about homeschooling/opting out of education systems that still fail to treat disabled students properly?#CripTheVote

Q9. How do we insist on higher standards for disabled students without making education too harsh, regimented, test-driven? #CripTheVote

Q10. Despite activists to showing the harm and danger of ABA it is still a 1st choice intervention. Why? What can be done? #CripTheVote

Thank you for joining the #CripTheVote chat on education. Please continue the convo!

Many thanks to our guest hosts @DrSubini @EndInvisibility @SaveRyanWhiteD. #CripTheVote

A Storify from today’s #CripTheVote chat will be up shortly.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

#CripTheVote Invitation to Disabled Candidates

#CripTheVote logo with ballot box with four disability symbols on the front and #CripTheVote in multicolored letters
The organizers of #CripTheVote invite candidates for office who are disabled to participate in live, scheduled Twitter chats this year and next. These will typically be about an hour long, and structured by questions, about half posed by the organizers, and the rest from #CripTheVote participants. Our aim is to give disabled candidates a disability-centered forum in which to discuss their positions, campaign plans, and how they view their own disabilities in relation to their political goals.

Like all #CripTheVote activities, these chats and this invitation are non-partisan. We do not endorse or oppose any candidate or any party. Candidates can expect to be questioned, sometimes vigorously, on how their policies might affect people with disabilities.

#CripTheVote is an online movement about politics, policy and civic participation focused on disabled people and disability issues. It was started in January, 2016, by Alice Wong, Gregg Beratan, and Andrew Pulrang, to focus attention to disability issues and disabled voters during the 2016 elections. Here is a link to our April 2017 chat on Disabled People in Public Service.
Candidates with disabilities, and / or staff can respond to this invitation by emailing to:

#CripTheVote Organizers

Alice Wong

Gregg Beratan

Andrew Pulrang

Monday, August 7, 2017

August 13, 2017 #CripTheVote Chat: Explaining Disability Issues to Family & Friends

#CripTheVote Chat: Explaining Disability Issues to Family & Friends August 13, 4 pm Pacific / 7 pm Eastern

We all have people in our lives … family, friends, coworkers … who we love and who love us, but who don’t really share our understanding of disability culture and activism. Most of us also know people who are flawed allies. They sincerely believe they are "on our side," but often miss the mark in important ways. We may also encounter indifference from family and friends. When we try to share our fears about disability policy, or our excitement about disability activism, they give us blank looks and hurry to change the subject.

This chat will explore ways disabled people can try to explain to people close to them what disability activism is all about. We hope to collect some simple tips and coping mechanisms we can all use to widen support for the disability community’s key principles and priorities.

How to Participate
When it’s time, search #CripTheVote on Twitter for the series of live tweets under the ‘Latest’ tab for the full conversation.
If you don’t use Twitter, you can follow along in real time here:
If you are overwhelmed by the volume of tweets and only want to see the chat’s questions so you can respond to them, check the @DisVisibility account. Each question will tweeted there 5-6 minutes apart.
Check out this explanation of how to participate in a Twitter chat by Ruti Regan:
Check out this captioned ASL explanation of how to participate in a chat by @behearddc -

Q1: What is it like discussing disability experiences and issues with your non-disabled family & friends? #CripTheVote‬

Q2: Have you experienced conflict between your family or friends’ religious or political views, and your disability identity? #CripTheVote

Q3: Do your family & friends understand how disability issues - like healthcare or the ADA - affect you personally? #CripTheVote

Q4: ‪Do you feel free to share fears about disability policy developments, or excitement about activism, with family & friends? #CripTheVote‬

Q5: How do non disabled people close to you regard your disability identity and activism? #CripTheVote

Q6: When family or friends say things about disability that anger you, what do you usually do or say? #CripTheVote

Q7: What success have you had getting family or friends to join in with disability activism? #CripTheVote

Q8: What communication strategies work/don't work for explaining disability issues to people close to you? #CripTheVote

Q9: What are some of the core facts & ideas about disability you wish family and friends understood better? #CripTheVote

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Action Alert on Health Care

The following message was sent by the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities Grassroots Team:

Medicaid advocates,

There’s a lot going on right now, but we’re going to try and explain some of it--as you may have heard, the Senate held some votes today.

The Senate began by voting to start debate on healthcare bills this afternoon. That vote passed, with both Senators Collins of Maine and Murkowski of Alaska voting no. The Senate also voted on a slightly revised version of BCRA, with the horrible per capita caps on Medicaid. Due to procedural rules, the Senate had get 60 votes and did not. (Both Senators Portman and Capito voted for BCRA--they need to hear about how harmful this vote would be for their constituents with disabilities.) We anticipate that they will vote tomorrow on full repeal; this vote will not be the final vote. Please know this voting process will continue over the next several days with many different votes.

The process they're using moves fast—but currently, we think the Senate will be taking a FINAL vote THURSDAY OR FRIDAY. We do not know what that will be. It doesn’t matter. We’ll let you know when we know--until then you will hear a lot about other votes, but you should focus on advocating as hard as you can until this final vote.

The various bills have morphed and mutated multiple times over the course of the last few weeks, but one thing has stayed the same: any of these bills will absolutely destroy our healthcare system, and with it, the lives of millions of Americans with disabilities. Here’s a quick recap of what all of these bills do:

No matter which version they vote on, millions of people will lose their health insurance.
No matter which version they vote on, Medicaid will be cut by billions of dollars.
No matter which version they vote on, millions of people with disabilities will have a harder time getting the health care and services we need.

If you’re feeling exhausted, scared, or overwhelmed, you’re not alone. This fight has been hard on us because of how important it is - and that’s exactly why we can’t give up now. These last days are critical. Here’s how we can win:

Keep calling:
Call your Senators and tell them to vote NO.
Top Targets: Senators Capito (WV), Corker (TN), Heller (NV), Portman (OH), Graham (SC), Moran (KS), McCain (AZ)
All Other Republican Senators
Call and thank Senators Collins and Murkowski and ask them to stay strong.
If you have already called, keep calling.
If you have trouble with phone conversations, evenings are a great chance to call and leave a voicemail while offices are closed.
If you use AAC, you can call in using your AAC device, or get a friend to read your message into the phone. After you call your Senators’ DC office, try their state offices. You can use our script:

My name is [your full name]. I’m a constituent of Senator [Name], and I live in [your town] and my zipcode is [zipcode]. I’m calling to ask the Senator to vote NO on any bill that caps or cuts Medicaid. If any of the bills being discussed as part of the budget process are passed, millions of Americans will lose health insurance. These bills take away protections that people with disabilities depend on, drastically cut Medicaid, and will return us to the bad old days when people with disabilities like [me/ my family member/ my friends] were uninsurable. We can’t go back. Please vote AGAINST repealing any form of caps or cuts to Medicaid. It’s time for Congress to scrap repeal, leave Medicaid alone, and work together to improve the ACA. We’re counting on you to do the right thing.

Thank Senators Murkowski and Collins. Normally, we tell you not to contact senators from other states. But regardless of where you live right now, please thank Senators Collins and Murkowski through email, letters, posting on social media, etc. Just a “Thanks from us and from the entire disability community for your support for people with disabilities. Please stay strong and reject any bill that hurts Medicaid” is more than enough. They will be feeling the pressure from others and we need to to make sure they hear from the disability community to stay strong.

Send emails and faxes. After you call, email your Senators and say the same thing. Then, send them a fax with that same message.

Go to your Senators’ local offices and tell their staff what you think. To find your Senators’ local offices, visit Under the contact information for each Senator, there is a list of their local offices. This is one of the most effective ways to get your point across to an elected official.

You may have heard or will hear people saying that a bill is dead or that a vote went well. But we’ve heard that before - people said the same thing about the House bill and we are now in the Senate. So don’t let down your guard - the Medicaid program remains at risk and harmful caps and cuts could very easily pass. We are the only thing standing in the way of these horrible changes. In the next few days, we have to call, email, show up, and advocate like our lives depend on it - because for many of us, they do.

In solidarity,

~The CCD Grassroots Team