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Disability Rights Week coming Oct. 5-8

Sue Reeves


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To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Center for Persons with Disabilities at Utah State University will present its inaugural Disability Rights Week Oct. 5-8. The week-long celebration is co-sponsored by the Disability Resource Center and USUSA, and includes an information fair, birthday cake and a free comedy show.

Justin Dart’s cowboy hat is being used as the iconic image for this year’s event. Dart is remembered as “the father of the ADA,” and he was famously photographed with President George H.W. Bush, and the hat, at the ADA signing.

“Disability rights are civil rights,” said Shane Johnson, associate director of development at the CPD and one of the event organizers. “Twenty percent of the population of Utah identifies as having a disability, so chances are good that every person on this campus either has a disability or has a friend or family member with a disability.

“The 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act occurred in July, but we wanted to wait until more people were on campus to commemorate the event,” Johnson said. “We have some fantastic events planned.”

The week begins with yard signs marking the accessible features of the USU campus—curb cuts, automatic door openers, elevators, etc., and a window display at the Campus Store.

On Thursday, Oct. 8, an information fair will be held at the TSC in the Sunburst and International Lounges from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. “Lives Worth Living,” a documentary about the disability rights movement that led to the ADA, will run on a continuous loop, and the CPD’s disability history posters will be on display. Visitors to the information fair will be treated to birthday cake from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in celebration of the ADA. This is an Aggie Passport event, so come and get your passport stamped!

On Friday, Oct. 9, America's Got Talent runner-up Drew Lynch and his partner Sam Conroe will make you laugh in the Sunburst Lounge at 6 p.m. This is a FREE event and open to the public.

In addition, there will be displays by campus and community partners including the DRC, USUSA, Common Ground Outdoor Adventures, AgrAbility, Options for Independence, Up to 3 Early Intervention, the Interdisciplinary Disability Awareness and Service Learning class, Aggies Elevated, Utah Assistive Technology Project, the National Federation for the Blind, WebAIM, the Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services, Special Olympics/Best Buddies, the Disability Law Center, the Counseling and Psychological Services office and the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

Watch the blog and the CPD Facebook page for additional details.

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