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If you have not heard, the Alaska Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired has support group meetings on the first three Wednesdays of each month, via the Zoom platform. The time is 1:00 PM. In November, the dates will be the 4th, 11th, and the 18th. We endeavor to cover a variety of topics and are always open to your suggestions. Here are the topics for November:
You may join by computer or cell phone. To join with a computer, click this link.
To join by phone, call this number. On many Smart Phones, you may tap the phone number, ID number and passcode will all be dialed for you. Simply wait patiently as the numbers are put in for you. If you are using Voice Over or TalkBack, you may have to double tap the word call twice. Otherwise, you should not have to push any numbers. It was tested about three times!
One tap mobile
Please feel free to do a test run during the hour before the meeting. If you have questions, call 771-4306.
We look forward to having you participate with our support group during November.
Bonnie Lucas, Ms, CVRT, MSW
VISA Program Coordinator
Access to voting is a fundamental right. ILC has put together a flyer on ways to access voting in Gulf Coast Alaska. We hope you will find this useful and this helps you to plan how you will be able to participate in voting this year.
How to Access Voting in Gulf Coast Alaska.pdf
As COVID-19 continues to isolate us from one another, Homer Council on the Arts (HCOA) has come up
with a warm and positive way to connect people—young and old—through the healing power of shared
artwork—Art from the Heart. Independent Living Center is a proud partner in this effort.
Read the flyer for more information. Art from the Heart Flyer.pdf
Every year Peer Power holds a summit in Anchorage. This year it is being held online and its free. Get more information and register at their web site.
The U.S. Census 2020 is underway. It’s an important civic activity that has direct impacts on our community. From the Census website;
The census provides critical data that lawmakers, business owners, teachers, and many others use to provide daily services, products, and support for you and your community. Every year, billions of dollars in federal funding go to hospitals, fire departments, schools, roads, and other resources based on census data.
The results of the census also determine the number of seats each state will have in the U.S. House of Representatives, and they are used to draw congressional and state legislative districts.
It's also in the Constitution: Article 1, Section 2, mandates that the country conduct a count of its population once every 10 years. The 2020 Census will mark the 24th time that the country has counted its population since 1790.
Read more about at the official Census 2020 web site; https://2020census.gov/en/what-is-2020-census.html
The Independent Living Center and many other social service non-profit agencies receive grant funding that is impacted by Census numbers. We would like to encourage everyone to participate in the Census. You can complete the questionnaire at this direct link; https://my2020census.gov/
Thanks for participating!
The Independent Living Center is first and foremost an advocacy agency. We seek to empower the people we serve and part of that empowerment is to exercise the right to vote. 2020 is an election year and with the safety concerns of Covid-19 many people are choosing to vote by mail. The Alaska Division of Elections web site says,
“Anyone may request a ballot by mail. You do not need a reason!”
If choosing to vote by mail a person will need to apply for a ballot for each election. Each election such as the primary and general election will have different application and return deadlines. It’s important to read the instructions on the Division of Elections web page carefully and to follow those instructions correctly to insure that your ballot will be counted.
You will need; An Alaska ID card or Driver’s License
You will need to put your own postage on the ballot to return it by mail
If voting by mail, we recommend completing and returning your ballot as quickly as possible. This allows time for unexpected delays in mail delivery that could be caused by a high volume of returns or issues related to Covid-19 and postal staffing.
Go to the Division of elections web page to read about all the details. https://www.elections.alaska.gov/Core/votingbymail.php
You can apply for an Absentee Ballot, register to vote, or update your voter registration online. The direct link to do that is; https://absenteeballotapplication.alaska.gov/
If you want to apply for an Absentee ballot using a paper form you can print the attached form below and mail or fax it into the Division of Elections. Instructions for sending it in are on the second page of the application.
AK Absentee Ballot Application Fed_State Elections.pdf
The Alaska Shared Vision has posted the videos from the 2020 Disability Pride Celebration. These videos highlight what the IL movement is all about. Follow the link to their YouTube page and enjoy :-)
Alaska Disability Pride 2020 Videos
You can find all about the planned events here: https://www.facebook.com/events/473583750008013/. I've attached the schedule describing ALL the activities, but below, I've listed what's happening THIS WEEK. Celebrations culminate next Sunday with a glorious hoop-dee-doo involving Temple Grandin, live music, animations, and who knows what all else. Here are the presentations happening at noon each day this week:
Monday 7/20 (12-1:00pm): Zack Gottsagen is an actor, acting teacher, and Down syndrome advocate, best known for his film roles in Peanut Butter Falcon, Best Summer Ever, and Bulletproof. He was born with Down syndrome and grew up in a family that promoted normalcy and mainstreaming. In 2020, Zack made Academy Awards history by being the first person with Down syndrome to present an award at the event. Alaskan interviewer is Garrett Dominick.
Tuesday 7/21 (12-1:00pm): Squirmy and Grubs (aka Shane and Hannah) are an inter- abled couple who host a daily vlog on Youtube, called Squirmy and Grubs, that posts humorous videos and answers questions about their lives together. Shane Burcaw was born with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and has used a wheelchair since the age of two. He is an author of three books, public speaker, and co-founder of a non-profit. Hannah Aylward studied liberal arts and is an accomplished swimmer and diver. She is able-bodied, and both she and Shane are disability advocates helping to end stigma about people with disabilities. Alaskan interviewer is Travis Noah.
Wednesday 7/22 (12-1:00pm): Micah Fialka-Feldman is a self-advocate, outreach coordinator, national speaker, and pioneer who advocates for disability pride, justice, and inclusion. He is part of the first wave of adults with an intellectual disability to attend college and be fully integrated in school and community. Micah advocates the notion that, “A community that excludes even one of its members is not a community at all.” Alaskan interviewer is Corey Gilmore.
Thursday 7/23 (12-1:00pm): Lydia X.Z. Brown is a disability justice advocate, organizer, attorney, educator, strategist, speaker, and writer whose work has largely focused on violence against multiply-marginalized disabled people. Lydia’s work has highlighted LGBTQ and issues impacting autistic people. Alaska interviewer is Ric Nelson.
Friday 7/24 (12-1:00pm): Judy Heumann is a disability rights activist who has used a wheelchair most of her life. Growing up, she experienced discrimination within the educational system, which prompted her and her mother to advocate for more inclusive school policies for children with disabilities. In 1974, she helped develop legislation that became the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act, and was instrumental in laying the groundwork for the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), which passed in 1990. Alaskan interviewer is Maggie Winston.
Register by clicking this link: Register(link is external)
The Independent Living Center has closed all 4 of our offices to the public, but will continue to have staff available to assist over the phone. We are encouraging social distancing, due to many of our employees, our clients and individuals in our communities, being vulnerable to respiratory illness, specifically COVID-19.
Taxi Voucher users are asked to call the office, prior to pick up, so your vouchers are ready when you arrive.
Please call your local office for assistance and updates.
Kodiak: 486-0493, IL 486-0491 DDRC
In collaboration with the Homer Council on the arts and many artists in the disability community, the TRAILS program is holding the first annual Disability Art Show. Attached is a PDF of a Homer News article describing the show. If you are in Homer please stop by the Homer Council on the Arts and see the show. All the art is for sale. Some pieces have a fixed price and some are silent auction items. The proceeds are split three ways between the artist, the Council on the Arts and the TRAILS program. Come support these artists and non profit programs! Artists look at disability in Homer Council on the Arts show _ Homer News.pdf