Search By Tag: Accessibilty

By Niles Dookie on October 8, 2018

SunTrust Provides a Shelter for Sunrise

SunTrust invests in the “Refuge from the Storm” – Hurricane Shelter Program

By Niles Dookie on October 1, 2018

The FARF Annual Meeting

The 42nd Florida Association of Rehabilitation Facilities has come and gone, and Sunrise did not leave empty-handed! Read more about Florida ARF as well as what we have planned for the rest of the week to honor several award recipients.

By Niles Dookie on May 15, 2018

Join us for some Family Fun on Sweetwater Abilities Awareness Day!

Join us at the Jorge Mas Canosa Center for some family fun Saturday, May 19th!

By Margaret Feldman on October 26, 2017

The Largest Car Show in Southwest Florida - Saturday, October 28, 2017 in Ft. Myers, Florida

The Southwest Florida Fall Nationals is the largest automotive event in the area. With well over 700+ show cars and 5,000 spectators, this is a car show you don't want to miss!!! All net proceeds will be donated to United Cerebral Palsy of Southwest Florida in Naples.

By Sunrise Group on January 20, 2017

Inclusive Voices: Let Me Take A Selfie

Back in 2015, two viral hashtags inspired thousands of Twitter users worldwide to share proud selfies and empowering narratives of living with disability The following year in 2016, the New York State Office for People With Developmental Disabilities launched its “I am able…” “selfie” awareness campaign to celebrate the varying abilities of New Yorkers everywhere. Since then, the selfie trend continues to challenge traditional stereotypes about self-advocates. Sunrise's own, Social Media Maverick, Hector Valencia, carries on the selfie tradition with his favorite hockey team here in South Florida.

By Sunrise Group on January 6, 2017

Inclusive Voices:

On February 2, 2001, President George W. Bush launched his "New Freedom Initiative saying, "Whenever any barrier stands between you and the full rights and dignity of citizenship, we must work to remove it, in the name of simple decency and justice. The promise of the ADA...has enabled people with disabilities to enjoy much greater access to a wide range of affordable travel, recreational opportunities and life-enriching services." As a result, professional sports facilities around the country are now accessible to fans of all abilities. Thanks to the New Freedom Initiative self-advocates like Hector Valencia can support their favorite teams thanks to accessible vehicle parking spaces, exterior accessible routes, doors, assembly sections, et al. So even when his team is loses, this season ticket holder wins!

By Sunrise Group on January 4, 2017

Advocacy Season Starts Now!

We’re mere weeks away from the first of the 2017 state sessions. As a disability advocate, your help is needed to promote, protect and defend the human rights of people with disability. In addition to the threat of a federal repeal of the Affordable Care Act, many states are proposing Medicaid Block Grants for all enrollees including people with disabilities. The challenge of block grants is compounded by the issue that many states already have existing Wait Lists with thousands of families in need of community-based disability services. Needless to say, there is a lot of work to do in the months ahead. Sunrise urges you to sign up as a self-advocate or ally via: advocacy@sunrisegroup.org.

By Sunrise Group on November 14, 2016

Inclusive Voices: Volunteer, Self-Advocate & Soccer Fan Celebrates #InclusionWorks

2016 marked 70 years of celebrating Disability Inclusion in the workplace. This year's theme was #InclusionWorks. Inclusion works because accommodations help employers realize the contributions of workers of all abilities.. Sunrise's newest volunteer, Hector Leonardo shares his story about his first week working at National Corporate Headquarters. Welcome aboard Hector!

By Sunrise Group on September 15, 2016

UCP of Southwest Florida – Naples Travels Back In Time to Visit Old Florida

On Wednesday, September 14th, self-advocates from United Cerebral Palsy of Southwest Florida in Naples “traveled back in time” with a visit to Everglades Wonder Gardens. The property is home to a botanical canopy that includes orchids, bamboo, bromeliads and other specimens. The lush, natural backdrop is also home to an eclectic assortment of rescued exotic birds and rescued reptiles who have now found a forever home in the Gardens. United Cerebral Palsy of Southwest Florida commends Everglades Wonder Gardens for ensuring that its gardens and wildlife are accessible for tourists of all abilities. UCP’s day long adventure “back in time” was truly a memorable experience!

By Sunrise Group on September 7, 2016

PUBLIC POLICY: Inclusive Education

Enabling inclusive education requires an in-depth transformation of education systems in legislation, policy and the way education is financed, administered, designed, taught and monitored. Being educated in an inclusive environment is a basic right for students with disabilities. In order to make learning truly inclusive, state-run and private school systems must be fully accessible, both physically and in terms of communication and support services, , according to a new set of guidelines from the United Nations.

By Sunrise Group on August 10, 2016

Disability History: The Hidden History of Eugenics

The first eugenics law in the United States was passed in Connecticut in 1895. Then in 1927, the U.S. Supreme Court decided, by a vote of 8 to 1, to uphold a state’s right to forcibly sterilize a person considered unfit to procreate. The case, known as Buck v. Bell, centered on a young woman named Carrie Buck, whom the state of Virginia had deemed to be “feeble-minded.” All told, as many as 70,000 Americans were forcibly sterilized during the 20th century. The victims of state-mandated sterilization included people like Buck who had been labeled “mentally deficient,” as well as those who who were deaf, blind and diseased. Who was Carrie Buck, and why must we never forget her legacy?

By Sunrise Group on August 8, 2016

Public Policy: Implementing the New DOJ Agreement in Georgia

The United States v. Georgia case has now entered a new phase. The State has committed to taking additional steps to improve its community system for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) in areas where the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Independent Reviewer found the State had not complied with terms of the 2010 Settlement Agreement. The goal of the “Extension Agreement” is to ensure that all people with I/DD can live and thrive in the community, including people with complex needs. The Extension Agreement has been approved by US District Court Judge Pannell and is court-enforceable. This agreement will have broad impact on ALL people in the I/DD system, like changes to support coordination and access to the clinical oversight program for anyone with complex needs.

By Sunrise Group on August 5, 2016

UCP of Southwest Florida in Naples Hosts A Mock Candidate’s Forum

As Sunrise is gearing up for our participation of National Voter Registration Day on September 27, 2016, we are working to make sure that our staff and the self-advocates we serve are not left out on election day, November 8th, 2016. We believe that realizing human rights is the essential first step to building just societies. Recently, UCP of Southwest Florida hosted a mock candidate’s forum; where individuals learned about the campaigning and election process. A tremendous thanks to Heather Wysocki, Voter Education Coordinator, Office of the Honorable Jennifer J. Edwards, Supervisor of Elections who created ballots for our Naples “special election.” as well as for bringing voting equipment for training day. Every one had fun!!

By Sunrise Group on July 18, 2016

Summertime Gardening in Greeneville

Therapeutic Gardening has blossomed throughout the Sunrise System. Our first raised beds for seasonal planting sprouted up in Thomasville, Georgia. The green-thumb epidemic quickly spread to Tallahassee, Florida. And despite the summer heat, dedicated gardeners with disabilities in Greeneville, Tennessee are transforming their front yard flower beds into serene landscapes. Sunrise’s group home residents take pride in the transformation of their home environment where they exercise their independence and work towards common goals. Kudos to Greeneville for getting their GREEN on!

By Sunrise Group on July 11, 2016

UCP of Southwest Florida Sets Sail with Freedom Waters in Naples

For many Floridians, summer slows down and people leave and go on adventures, but in Naples, Freedom Waters Foundation continues jumping with activity! Boat trips; fishing tournaments, cruising, sailing, fishing for veterans and people with disabilities! Freedom Waters Foundation’s mission is to improve the lives of individuals with disabilities and veterans by providing therapeutic marine related experiences on the waters of South Florida. With only two full-time employees and a fleet of volunteers, Freedom Waters provides accessibility and recreational therapy for Collier county and surrounding areas. On Friday, July 8th, program participants from UCP of Southwest Florida in Naples set sail on a unique journey into the Gulf of Mexico. Check us out!

By Sunrise Group on June 22, 2016

Sunrise Celebrates Community Inclusion on the 17th Anniversary of Olmstead

ODAY IN DISABILITY HISTORY: On June 22, 1999, the Supreme Court issued its landmark “Olmstead v. L.C.” decision fundamentally changing the lives of Lois Curtis and Elaine Wilson–who had both been languishing in an institution for years after their initial treatment ended. Lois and Elaine filed suit under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) for release from the Georgia facility–and, in doing so, affirmed the constitutional right to self-determination not only for themselves, but also for other Americans with disabilities to live outside of institutions, opening avenues and increase opportunities to enhance our communities and our lives.

By Sunrise Group on May 23, 2016

Inclusive Voices: Hometown Paradise

Ah vacation. How many of us don’t sometimes wish we could escape the hustle, bustle, & day-to-day responsibilities of our normal lives for a week of fun and relaxation somewhere far, far away? The truth is that for many of us a traditional vacation is not always in the cards. Between restaurants, hotels, and transportation, travel costs can add up fast especially when those costs are multiplied for a family. And even when the cost isn’t a factor, sometimes physical limitations, transportation and accessibility issues or health concerns prevent us from leaving town anytime the urge strikes. But who says you can’t enjoy a “staycation” in your own backyard? Cape Coral Sunbeam writer shares his favorite hometown spot.

By Sunrise Group on January 15, 2016

ABLE Accounts May Be Available Sooner Than Expected

DID YOU KNOW? Tucked inside a tax bill approved by lawmakers in December 2015 is a provision that will permit individuals with disabilities to open new accounts established under the Achieving a Better Life Experience, or ABLE, Act in any state, regardless of where they reside. Despite federal passage of the ABLE Act in 2014, states had to approve their own legislation and develop mechanisms to regulate and administer the new accounts before letting consumers take advantage. As of December 2015, only 35 states had approved such legislation. The December 2015 change means that people with disabilities across the country will be able to open ABLE accounts when the first state programs are up and running which could happen as soon as February or March. Ohio, Florida, Virginia and Nebraska are widely expected to be among the first to make ABLE programs available.

By Sunrise Group on January 13, 2016

What Does The Disability Integration Act Propose?

On December 18, 2015, U.S. Senator Charles Schmer (D-NY) filed S. 2427 before the 114th Congress. The Bill is known as the “Disability Integration Act of 2015.” Many are asking exactly what the proposal will do for people with disabilities. Basically, the bill would expand access to community living for millions of Americans. Known as the Disability Integration Act, the legislation would dramatically alter the status quo. Current law generally assures people with disabilities care in nursing homes and other institutional facilities if they need assistance with eating, bathing, housekeeping and other daily activities. Unfortunately, the availability of community-based services is often more limited and subject to long waiting lists. Schumer’s proposal would outlaw such waiting lists and prohibit caps on services as well as other measures like low pay that may restrict access to community living. Sunrise encourages everyone to ask their Congressmen to support this bill!

By Sunrise Group on January 4, 2016

Inclusive Voices: Website Accessibility in 2016

As Sunrise kicks off a fresh new year, we are working on significant upgrades to our website and advocacy tools for 2016! The countdown is on to our re-launch in the first quarter of this year. It will feature many helpful tools for self-advocates, allies, supporters and the general public. As always, accessibility is a critical component of our upgrades. It is important to know the accessibility laws, regulations, rules, and grant requirements that may apply to any website that is developed. For instance, the Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination and requires reasonable accommodations by local and state entities, including in their websites. How does your online communication effort rate on the accessibility scale? Guest blogger, Talley Wells shares his experience.