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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 26, 2016

Greeneville Hikers Embrace Sensory Integration, “The Natural Way”

There are many forms of developmental disabilities which include sensory processing disorders. For those with sensory processing challenges, particularly those with intellectual disabilities, the use of sensory integration therapy helps improve the adaptability of the brain. During sensory integration therapy, an individual performs an activity that combines sensory input with motion. One of the latest therapeutic models used for sensory integration (to complement the physical, occupational and speech therapy) is immersion in nature. That’s right “Nature Therapy!” The smiles on the faces of Greeneville’s hikers attest to the positive impact that nature therapy can make in anyone’s day!

By Sunrise Group on August 24, 2016

UCP Lifelinks in Tallahassee Goes Wild At St. Marks’ Conservation Center

Program participants from UCP Lifelinks in Tallahassee recently visited St. Marks Wildlife where they learned about insects, birds of prey, mammals and Florida’s natural history as well as community inclusion and the role everyone plays in protecting Florida. Inclusion means that all people, regardless of their varying ability, mobility or health care needs, have the right to be respected and appreciated as valuable members of our communities. This includes access and participation in recreational activities as well as engagement in environmental conservation that protects the outdoors and wildlife. For this reason, conservation often intersects with the concept with inclusion. UCP Lifelinks in Tallahassee thanks St. Mark’s Wildlife Conservation Area for the awesome presentation today (and for time with the baby squirrel … probably our favorite!)

By Sunrise Group on August 23, 2016

National Public Policy: Service Providers Turn To Washington For Help

The Disability Community Act, which is supported by United Cerebral Palsy, Autism Speaks, the Autism Society and Easter Seals in addition to ANCOR, is estimated to cost about $300 million. The bill was introduced by Rep. Paul Tonko, D-N.Y., and has support from Rep. Steve Stivers, R-Ohio, as well as both chairs of the Congressional Bipartisan Disabilities Caucus, Rep. Gregg Harper, R-Miss., and Rep. Jim Langevin, D-R.I. If passed, the bill would offer a temporary increase in federal Medicaid dollars for programs serving people with developmental disabilities. Advocates are still working to get a companion bill introduced in the U.S. Senate.

By Sunrise Group on August 12, 2016

Dedicated DSP in the Spotlight: Greeneville, Tennessee

It’s amazing how a hand-full of select people just seem to “know their dream job” even when most people are still trying to decide their career oath. Choosing the right career is tricky. Economist Neil Howe estimates that only five percent of people find a good career match on the first try. And even beyond this chilling stat, there’s so much external pressure to land the perfect job, follow your passion and be super successful by the end of your 20s. No wonder most people break into a cold sweat when asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” That was never the case for Sunrise Community of Tennessee in Greeneville’s Josh Hensley. Josh has known he want to work in the greater disabilities field since before he was even eligible to apply. As he continues his career in the field, Greeneville thanks him for years of dedication, congratulates him on his B.A. and wishes him nothing but the BEST!

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?