Disability rights in the spotlight
Published: Mar. 21, 2023 at 3:15 PM EDT
BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) – March is National Disability Awareness Month, an effort to increase public awareness about the needs of our disabled neighbors and to give them support, and opportunities.
Disability Rights Vermont says there’s a lot of work to be done here in Vermont to make things equitable. Housing remains a large issue for everyone in Vermont — especially in Chittenden County — but even more so for people who need accessible housing. There are also huge vacancies in service provider roles, both for mental health and developmental services, due to a lack of pay.
Disability Rights Vermont is working on making voting on Town Meeting Day more accessible as well as advocating for the better treatment of disabled people in the criminal justice system.
“As with many other awareness months, it really needs to be an intentional effort every month — if not every day — in the laws we make, in the ways we communicate, and in the ways we treat each other,” said the group’s Lindsey Owen.
And while people might make an effort to listen and learn from people with disabilities during this time, advocates also say we need to be intentional in our laws, communication, and treatment of people who are disabled.
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