Below are quotes and articles from team members who attended one of the summits. If you would like to summit additional feedback please submit comments through the website’s contact page here.
What did you learn?
“…that there is this fantastic movement crossing the country.”
“[That there is a] high level of professionalism and passion from the self-advocates.”
“I learned that an individual is not alone and if we come together we can make a bigger difference.”
“There are some hard conversations that may be uncomfortable, but VITAL to move forward in a manor that’s productive and honors the voices of ALL self advocates…”
“I learned a lot about the DD Act and what it and all the offices are responsible for.”
“Promote awareness and opportunities for self-advocates to be visible as a [participant in] policy development.”
“…have a frank discussion about what self-advocacy is and how to best support it.”
“Focus on getting more youth involved in advisory committees and educate youth about self-advocacy.”
“Emphasize the importance of self-advocacy for young people.”
“Re-energize the [self-advocacy] movement.”
What did you like the most?
“The mixture of national discussions and state specific work opportunities.”
“…self-advocates were excited that someone was interested in their cause and their lives. I feel I can’t let them down when we go home.”
“Being respected, listened to…”
“Having the opportunity to participate in public policy advocacy as a self advocate; nothing about us without us!”
“This was a terrific opportunity for our state to coordinate our ADD partner efforts with a variety of different self-advocacy efforts going on in the state. Everyone left feeling supported, valued, and optimistic about the connections they had made and the work they can continue to do back home. People who had never worked together (or even really known about each other) are now eager to connect and move forward.”
“ADD Commissioner Sharon Lewis – thanks for listening!”
“Like many people in this field, my commitment to justice for people with developmental disabilities started early. At age five, two adult friends of mine with Down syndrome explained to me why they had just gotten married after loving each other for many years: People didn’t want to let them marry. I was outraged for my generous and loving friends. As years passed, my experiences continued to persuade me that people who think or function differently add richness to my life and to any community…”
by Rachael Sarto, MN LEND Trainee