PACT IN FULL GEAR AND FULL SPEED AHEAD!

PACT, the Personal Attendant Coalition of Texas, is really busy these days.  PACT has started a Texas Attendant Project to recruit attendants and supporters of attendants to add their voices and faces to the call for decent wages for community attendants in Texas.  TAP contact people will be working in nine regions around the state, TAP will be working with the Texas Centers for Independent Living (who have been terrifically supportive) and other community groups in addition to many individuals.  Click here for more info.

There is a petition in English and Spanish you can download and collect signatures of folks who support better wages.

There will be a Respect and More Community Attendant Rally and briefing:

Wednesday, March 8th at 11 AM at the Schmidt-Jones Family Life Center, Great Hall (2nd floor), 1300 Lavaca (NW corner of 13th and Lavaca), Austin TX 78701 for Lunch and the Legislative Briefing from 11 AM to 12:30 PM with a 1pm March. 

Your organization can sign organizational letter of support too!  Go here for a sample letter.

ADAPTs ADOPT A LEGISLATOR IN FULL SWING

The Texas Legislature is back in town and ADAPT is back at the Capitol to educate them on many disability issues and perspectives.  This is a participatory event that lasts 180 days.  And ADAPT wants you there!

Aside from the budget, which is super tight this time around, thanks to legislators dedicating large amounts of the state’s revenues to Texas Department of Transportation (TX DOT), ADAPT is focusing on $13 an hour min. wages for community attendants; increases and improvements to community based services for people with disabilities; making sure TNCs (like Uber, Lyft, etc.) don’t discriminate against us; accessible, affordable, INTEGRATED housing (with no services required); and a host of other issues that will likely come up.  Also TX DOT is under Sunset Review and ADAPT wants to be sure they serve persons with disabilities in their future efforts, especially since they are being given so much dough ray me.

Visits, testimony at hearings, guerilla theater, the sky and our imagination are the limits.

Come join us. We believe the grassroots must be heard. You know more about all this than you think you do, and you can learn even more.  We meet at the Capitol Cafeteria (inside the Capitol on the E-1 level) every Tuesday and Thursday morning at 10 am and you can just drop by and join us; but don’t be late — we move out for action pretty darn quick!

ADAPT Participates in Local Marches

Last weekend ADAPT was busy on the streets of Austin.  We were one of the hosts at the One Resistance March on Friday night for which a large group of local organizations got together to march and share information and concerns about the radical turns being taken by the federal government.  In addition to the march through downtown, in which about 7,000 people participated, representatives of many at risk groups spoke about their specific concerns, and a wall of barriers was torn down.  Danny Saenz spoke for ADAPT and Heiwa Salovitz participated in the wall tear down; both represented us proudly highlighting many disability issues!  Cathy Cranston and Robin Hoffpauir carried a PACT/ADAPT banner in the march.  It was all about supporting one another, resisting efforts to harm our people and mobilizing for action.  Lots of other ADAPTers turned out as well!

Saturday, among the 50,000 people at the Women’s March in Austin there were many ADAPT folks sprinkled in the crowd.  Being short in a massive crowd of primarily standing people, we operated on trust and the knowledge that there were others out there cause it was a trifle difficult to see each other.  But we met many supporters of disability rights.  Bob Kafka was especially pleased to see Katie (who used to be a VISTA at UCP TX) carrying a huge My Medicaid Matters sign.  There were lots of other people with disabilities and non-disabled supporters in the crowd.  The energy and intensity were terrific and we encourage one and all to go to the Women’s March on Washington website and sign up for follow up actions.  If you are interested in following up on disability issues locally contact ADAPT or call 512-442-0252.  We are meeting at the Capitol Cafeteria (inside the Capitol on the E-1 level) every Tuesday and Thursday morning at 10 am and you can just come and join us; but don’t be late — we move out for action pretty darn quick!

PACT 6th ANNUAL ATTENDANT APPRECIATION BBQ & PARTY

Please join the Personal Attendant Coalition of Texas (PACT) to recognize your work with persons with disabilities in our community.

Community Attendants  Equal Independence   Nominate someone today!

WHAT:  BBQ, Music by “J and J”  and gifts for attendants

WHEN:    Saturday October 15, 2016  4-6pm

WHERE:  Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, 1206 E. 9th  (Metro Bus Route 2 )

 *IMPORTANT*:     RSVP  At ADAPT/PACT: 512-442-0252 to register for this free event.

2016_pact_bbq_press_release

 PACT 6th BBQ Anual de APRECIACION DE ASISTENTES PERSONALES

Únase a la Coalición de Asistentes Personales de Texas – PACT – para reconocer su trabajo con personas en nuestra comunidad.

QUÉ:         BBQ, Música de “J and J”,  Regalos de Asistentes Personales 

CUÁNDO:   sábado, 15 de octobre  4-6pm

DÓNDE:    Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, 1206 E. 9th Street

Rutas de Autobús:    #2

IMPORTANTE:  RSVP antes de 15 de octobre  En ADAPT / PACT: 512-442-0252  para registrarse. Gratis!

Victory! Disability Rights finally included in Civil Rights Summit

Disability rights are civil rights group group shot(photos by Kaye Beneke kaye@beneketx.com)

DISABILITY RIGHTS ARE CIVIL RIGHTS!

(April 8, 2014 – Austin, TX) Disability rights advocates gathered to hold a press conference near the LBJ Presidential Library where a national Civil Rights Summit is taking place.  The Summit which the library is holding to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and acknowledge it’s legacy.  Presidents Jimmy Carter, William “Bill” Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama will be addressing the conference, among many others.

To commemorate the impact of the Civil Rights Act, workshops cover a variety of other topics, including: Gay Marriage, Immigration Policy, Music and Social Consciousness, LBJ and MLK, Fulfilling a Promise, Realizing a Dream, Leveling the Sports Playing Field, Heroes of the Civil Rights Movement, Social Justice in the 21st Century, Women: How High is the Glass Ceiling?, and Education: The Ultimate Civil Right.  Despite having been contacted over 2 months ago to see if disability was going to be included, Summit organizers were not planning to include this important legacy.  However, at the 11th hour, thanks to the speedy and united response from the disability rights community from across the country, Summit Organizers finally found a place to include disability on one of the panels at the Summit.

So today members of the disability rights community and our allies gathered to celebrate this victory, the 50th Anniversary of the Civil Rights Act and the importance of the Americans with Disabilities Act and disability rights movements. Speakers included: Bob Kafka – ADAPT, Regina Blye – TX SILC, Cema Mostroleo – SafePlace, Stephanie Thomas ADAPT, Dennis Borel -CTD, and Jim Harrington – TX Civil Rights Project.  We recommit to continuing our civil rights struggle.  In addition, we celebrate the ADA, great liberation legislation for 52 million Americans, which will see its 25th Anniversary next year.

Thank you to ALL who attended and all who wrote, called, emailed or otherwise contacted the Summit organizers.  AND thank you to Lex Frieden, one of the unsung heros of the ADA, who will ably represent us at the Summit on Thursday.

Nothing About Us Without Us!

HISTORIC VISITABILITY VICTORY

January 30th Austin City Council amended the single family building code to include Visitability standards.  Starting in July 2015 ALL new single family and duplex homes will have to have:

  • a no step entrance (back, side, front or garage door);
  • an accessible path through the first floor;
  • a 32 inch clear bathroom or half bath on the the first floor and
  • light switches, electric outlets and other environmental controls between 48″ and 15″ (the same as in public buildings and newer apartments.)

In 1998 Austin passed similar requirements for single family homes that were built with city assistance.  Since then over 7,500 visitable homes have been built and only 10 waivers were needed.  With such a successful track record, ADAPT, the Austin Mayor’s Committee and other disability groups felt it was time for the next phase.  Many of the affordable housing developers also supported this effort.  We are proud that Austin has taken this important stride toward integration and inclusion, and we are elated that persistence has paid off.  We want to acknowledge and thank Eleanor Smith and Concrete Change for their leadership in the Visitability movement.

DISABILITY RIGHTS POSTERS

The first two in a series of disability rights posters are now available!  Perfect for holidays gifts and New Year’s inspiration.  Order yours now.  Order form is on the Support Us page

poster1rightsseries poster2power200Display your pride in decades of activism with the first two releases in ADAPT’s “Rights Worth Fighting For” original poster series.  Make a statement in your home or office and help sustain ADAPT’s powerful nationwide grassroots advocacy for all Americans with disabilities.  Each 18″X 24″ poster is only $5, shipping included.  Order 10 or more posters for $4 each!  What a deal!

 

CHECK OUT OUR VIDEOS!

We have links to 2 new great videos, one on ADAPT and Freeing Our People

and one on the PACT and attendant issues.

Links are on the About Us page.  (And they are captioned too)

Our Homes not Nursing Homes

Do you know someone who wants to get out of a nursing home? Texas is one of 17 states to get a federal Money Follows the Person grant to help people move out of nursing homes and other institutions.  Call ADAPT for more information 512-442-0252.

Access

The Americans with Disabilities Act, ADA is more than two decades old.  A lot has improved, but not everything.  Know of a business that needs access improvements?  Contact David Wittie or Nicky Boyte 442-0252. Do you have curb cut or other community accessibility issues? Contact Jennifer McPhail 442-0252.  AND come to the Tuesday Access Club (Tuesdays at 12:30 at the ADAPT office) to get involved.

We won Best Champions for Equal Access 2012!

Access to mainline Capital Metro buses and bus stops is another issue Austin ADAPT is working on, Contact David Wittie 442-0252.  Austin Cab,Yellow Cab and Lone Star Cabs provide wheelchair accessible taxi service in Austin.  Having problems getting rides on those accessible taxi cabs?  You can report it to the city of Austin 974-1554.  And let us know too –David is collecting this information.