The Americans with Disabilities Act was enacted in 1990 to make sure that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else. Since that time, many social barriers have been reduced for people with disabilities. However, there is more work that needs to be done for people with disabilities to become more independent and involved in their world.
Each March, the National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (NACDD), partners with Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) and National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) to create a social media campaign that highlights the many ways in which people with and without disabilities come together to form strong, diverse communities.
The campaign seeks to raise awareness about the inclusion of people with developmental disabilities in all areas of community life, as well as awareness to the barriers that people with disabilities still sometimes face in connecting to the communities in which they live. DD Awareness Month covers three main areas: education, employment and community living.
Ways you can get involved:
- Become educated about various types of disabilities to increase personal understanding
- Hire a person with a disability
- Support businesses that foster inclusion
- Invite people with disabilities to participate in your civic organization or community activity
- Contact your legislator and ask them to support citizens with disabilities in your community
- Advocate for those with disabilities at every opportunity
- Give time or money to an organization that supports people with disabilities
- Teach your children that all people have something to contribute
- Host a disability awareness day at your school, club or organization
Our hope is that you’ll use this month (and every other month in the year) to help raise awareness and become informed about developmental disabilities and the importance of inclusion in every aspect of life.