ASAN August Newsletter
We may be reaching the end of summer, but there’s still some time left before we embrace the beautiful colors of fall, and plenty of work for us to get done! Let’s get into all the exciting advocacy work we tackled this month.
Earlier this month, ASAN condemned hospital policies that prioritize profits over patients. This was amidst concerns raised by HCA Healthcare employees about hospital policies that push patients to begin end-of-life care when there may be other options available. ASAN opposes policies that devalue the lives of people with disabilities and make us more likely to die. We see this in cases of COVID-19 medical rationing, physician-assisted suicide, limits on organ transplantation, and policies that push us into hospice prematurely. ASAN will continue to fight these policies and work to prevent their deadly consequences.
Autistic people, nonspeakers, and autistic nonspeakers’ input on what research we want done matters, but we’re often left out of setting priorities for funding research. That leaves us with research about us that doesn’t reflect our entire community. No research about us without us — we’ve got two ways you can help researchers understand our community’s priorities! One way is to submit comments to the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) by September 28th! The IACC advises on federal funding for autism research and makes recommendations for how funding is prioritized. We have a toolkit about the process available in Easy Read and plain language here! The other way is to respond to a request for information from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD). The NIDCD is looking for people who care about communication for AAC users and nonspeakers to respond to a few questions by September 15th. You can find the questions, learn how to submit comments, and get more info about both opportunities here.
Last week, we focused solely on projects relating to our equity plan, which you can find in formal language, plain language, and Easy Read. These triannual weeks are an important part of our equity plan! Things at ASAN don’t really slow down between policy advocacy, running programs, coalition work, creating resources and more, so it’s important that we dedicate time to the equity goals that drive our work. ASAN staff members are constantly working on equity-related work — whether that’s guidelines for how we do our work or projects like our continued Spanish translations — but our equity weeks are a chance for everyone at ASAN to focus on those goals together.
We’re also gearing up for Disability Voting Rights Week next month! We’ll be sharing important resources on registering to vote, preparing for election day, protecting your right to vote, and more! Keep an eye out during the third week of September, or get a head start with our voting resources here.
ASAN is hiring! We’re looking for a Policy Coordinator, a Policy Analyst, and a Development Manager to join our team. Learn more about these roles, and how to apply, here!
All of our advocacy work is made possible by the ASAN community, including the support of our members. Your donations throughout the year allow us to keep up the fight for disability rights! Signing up for an ASAN membership is easy, quick, and comes with options for a variety of budgets. Interested in becoming a member? Check it out here! We also have scholarship memberships for self advocates who cannot afford to give.
There is still so much work to be done, and we can only do it because of you! We’re grateful for your support this month and every month.
The Team at ASAN
|There are lots of different parts of policy work that often go unrecognized. Let’s take a moment to shine a spotlight on some of the smaller, yet equally significant, projects our policy team has been working on this month!