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Disability Rights Movement - download pdf or read online

By Tim McNeese

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Many Americans placed a new emphasis on education during the latter decades of the 1800s, and those with disabilities believed education could improve their lives as well. In 1864, the US Congress established the National Deaf-Mute College. Thirty years later, it was renamed Gallaudet College, to honor Thomas Gallaudet’s groundbreaking efforts President Abraham Lincoln signed the order establishing Gallaudet College. in establishing his American Asylum for the Deaf back in 1817. 7 29 Schools were also First Female Graduate founded for students with other disabilities.

The group members campaigned and won the right to access all parts of the Berkeley campus. School officials had to remodel buildings so there were no barriers to wheelchair access. By 1972, the Berkeley campus was home to the Center for Independent Living, an advocacy organization for people with disabilities. Roberts graduated and got a job, despite the California Department of Rehabilitation’s earlier prediction he would never be employed. Perhaps ironically, Roberts would later serve as the agency’s director.

PAUL STRACHAN AND THE AFPH During and after World War II, organizations supporting people with disabilities were more active than ever. Paul Strachan, a labor union organizer, founded the American Federation of the Physically Handicapped (AFPH) in 1942. 4 While most earlier organizations supporting people with disabilities had been specific to one disability such as blindness or deafness, Strachan insisted his organization span across all disabilities. He drew members who had amputated limbs, diabetes, hearing impairments, vision impairments, epilepsy, polio, and other conditions.

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