The Disabilities Rights Movement and YOU!

Did you know that as a member of Best Buddies, you are a part of the disabilities rights movement? You are playing a huge role in the advocacy for inclusion of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities! We don’t know about you, but thinking about being a part of something so big gives us a feeling of empowerment. It makes us ask ourselves, what more can we do? If you have ever found yourself asking this same question, we have a suggestion for you: lobby to your local government!

If this is something you have never done before, it can sound very intimidating. Where do you even start? That’s where we come in to help! Lobbying to local government is actually very easy and extremely gratifying. It is so important that we, as student advocates for individuals with disabilities, speak up for what we are passionate about and lobby for changes to be made!

There are numerous issues affecting the disabilities rights movement, such as secondary and post-secondary school development research funding, teacher evaluations, and disability rights in the workplace. Do some research and find what issues interest you the most. A great place to start is the Council for Exceptional Children’s website. There, you can find information about specific issues affecting individuals with disabilities and the disabilities rights movement itself.

So now that you have done your research and found an issue to lobby for, how do you go about writing a letter and knowing who to send it to?

We have put together a step-by-step guide for lobbying to your local government. Click HERE and follow the steps listed for an easy and quick way to make a HUGE difference. Consider spreading the word to your Best Buddies chapter and asking buddy pairs to write letters together. This is not only a great way to educate your chapter on relevant issues in the disabilities rights movement, but also a way for buddy pairs to work together for the bigger cause.

Remember, you can access a guide explaining all the steps for lobbying to your local government by clicking HERE. Now go out there and make a difference! Let us know your results by tweeting us @BestBuddiesYLC!

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