2001 N.O.D. Annual Report
A Year of Accomplishments and New Challenges Faced
A Message From N.O.D. Chairman Michael R. Deland and N.O.D. President Alan A. Reich
N.O.D. began the year 2001 on a high note, with the culmination of our six-year campaign to add a statue of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in his wheelchair at the FDR Memorial in Washington, D.C. At the dedication ceremony, President Clinton called it a "reminder for all who touch, who see, who wheel and walk around, that they, too, are free."
Two weeks later, N.O.D. was working with a new administration. President George W. Bush announced the New Freedom Initiative in a ceremony at the White House, which N.O.D. helped to organize. The New Freedom Initiative is a broad-based commitment to advance the full participation of people with disabilities in American life and draws heavily upon the results of the 2000 N.O.D./Harris Survey of Americans with Disabilities.
In the spring, N.O.D. launched the EmployAbility program to expand participation in the workforce. The Community Partnership Program was re-shaped into a fee-based membership program for communities. It now promotes comprehensive community accessibility and recognizes noteworthy progress through the Accessible America Competition. Venice, Florida is the first winner of the $25,000 prize.
During the summer the N.O.D. website was retooled and launched again, so that it is now fully accessible, regardless of one's ability to see, hear or type. The site hosts an ever-increasing store of knowledge about N.O.D., its programs and disability issues.
Following the terrorist attacks of September 11th, N.O.D. immediately responded. While smoke was still rising from the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, N.O.D. convened a fifty-person Task Force comprising representatives of disability groups, disaster relief organizations, major federal agencies and the White House. The Task Force forwarded recommendations to President Bush, and N.O.D. leaders met with Governor Tom Ridge, Director of the new Office of Homeland Security. Letters were sent urging governors, mayors and officials at all levels, as well as people with disabilities themselves, to ensure that local emergency planning efforts include people with disabilities. N.O.D.'s Emergency Preparedness Initiative is spreading the message that all plans for emergency preparedness must include our community.
Like many organizations, N.O.D. was forced to reduce its expenditures significantly during the recession. We accept no government funding and because many private contributions were reduced throughout 2001, or directed only to disaster relief after September 11th, it was a doubly difficult time for N.O.D. Despite the challenging times, N.O.D. Board Members and several other major contributors made a special effort to close this gap, and these efforts are continuing.
As N.O.D. begins its 20th anniversary year, its core programs are strong and expanding, and relevant new programs are being launched. While our challenge remains large, N.O.D. is in the vanguard helping more and more people with disabilities to meaningfully participate in and contribute to the American dream — both nationally and in communities throughout America. We invite you to read about our history and current programs in this our 20th anniversary annual report.
THE NATIONAL ORGANIZATION ON DISABILITY: TWENTY YEARS OF PROGRESS
Not until the end of the 20th century did the world begin to formally recognize one of its largest minorities — the ten percent of humankind with a disability. The United Nations and a few stalwart Americans with disabilities were among the first to bring attention to the neglect, isolation, and wasted talents of the world's half-billion individuals with disabilities. Now, in the United States and many other countries, the rights of people with disabilities are protected.
This process of inclusion began in earnest in 1975, when the United Nations proclaimed 1981 as the International Year of Disabled Persons (IYDP). The IYDP called on all nations to recognize their disability populations, many of whom were doubly disadvantaged by poverty. The U.N. urged governments, communities, religions, and organizations to adopt the IYDP goal of full and equal participation of people with disabilities in all aspects of life.
The U.S. Council for IYDP was the first private sector group in any country to fund and lead a U.N. International Year observance. Led by Xerox CEO David Kearns, the U.S. Council quickly built a staff of 30 to oversee the one-year observance. At the year's conclusion, representatives from 48 states met in Washington, D.C., and formed the National Office on Disability to continue the momentum toward the IYDP's goal. In 1983, the name was changed to the National Organization on Disability.
Soon after N.O.D.'s inception, the organization's leaders assembled an outstanding Board from both within and outside the disability community. Rich DeVos, President of Amway Corporation was chosen to lead the Board. Alan A. Reich, who had served as President of the U.S. Council, was appointed to lead the new organization and has been at the helm of N.O.D. ever since. The Board decided that N.O.D. would be independent of government funding, but invited a dozen legislators from the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives to serve as N.O.D. Congressional Sponsors.
Partners Strengthen the Effort
N.O.D. built on the IYDP partnership model for grassroots outreach by developing two core programs — the Community Partnership Program (CPP) and the National Partnership Program (NPP) — both of which are still in operation today.
The Community Partnership Program (CPP), initiated during the IYPD, fosters alliances among people with and without disabilities; national, state and local groups; and government and the private sector. By 1990, 3,000 towns, cities, and counties had joined the CPP and were working with N.O.D. to carry out local voluntary employment, education, access, and other critical programs to give people with disabilities the chance to participate more fully in American life. In 1993 N.O.D. launched the Community Awards Competition to promote replication of outstanding local disability programs. To date, N.O.D. has distributed cash awards totaling in excess of $400,000 to over 200 communities.
The National Partnership Program (NPP), formed in 1984, enlists major national non-disability associations to use their local chapter networks to further the mission of N.O.D. Several generous corporate sponsorships have enabled N.O.D. to provide $1,000 annual grants to each organization so that it may recognize outstanding local association initiatives. The competition keeps disability issues on the local chapter's agenda, and strengthens the parent association's commitment to N.O.D.'s goals. N.O.D. has presented over 600 cash awards totaling more than a half-million dollars to the now 40 NPP organizations.
Core Programs Accelerate
As people with disabilities gained confidence in their own advocacy, they increasingly began to press for both their rights and greater engagement in the life of America. N.O.D. responded by initiating two programs in the late 1980s to promote, respectively, access to religious worship and access to voting.
Founding N.O.D. Board Member, Rev. Harold Wilke first raised the need for a national Religion and Disability Program at an N.O.D. Board meeting. Born without arms, Rev. Wilke nevertheless has had an active career as a minister and prominent disability advocate. He knew that places of worship of all faiths were not accessible or welcoming to worshippers with disabilities, as they could be and he urged N.O.D. to act. In response, N.O.D. launched its Religion and Disability Program in 1989, appointing Ginny Thornburgh as its director. Today, the program is grandly fulfilling its original mission: identifying and helping to remove barriers to the full participation of worshippers with disabilities. To date, more than 2,000 houses of worship have joined N.O.D.'s Accessible Congregations Campaign.
Turning from the spiritual to the political arena, N.O.D. sought to redress basic failures in the voting process. Polling places often are inaccessible. Transportation programs to help bring people with disabilities to the polls are almost nonexistent. Voting machines typically are not designed with the needs of citizens with vision or mobility impairments in mind, and poll workers have insufficient training in assisting voters with disabilities.
During the 1988 national election cycle, N.O.D. mounted a nationwide campaign for polling place accessibility. N.O.D. distributed one million cards advising poll workers how to assist voters with disabilities and prepared an illustrated guide on accessibility for state and local election officials. N.O.D. also called on the major party candidates to speak out on disability issues and commissioned the Louis Harris and Associates polling firm to track the preferences of voters with disabilities. Surveying in 1988 detected a distinct shift in the disability community's preferences for Vice President Bush after he addressed issues of concern to them. Following his election, Mr. Bush stated that this change in the disability vote played an important role in securing his margin of victory. Recognizing that the disability community has the potential to make a difference in elections ‚Äî and, even more importantly, that the voices of citizens with disabilities need to be heard - N.O.D. remains committed to increasing the participation of voters with disabilities in the political process.
N.O.D. Rallies for the ADA's Passage
As N.O.D. built its programs and its reputation, the nationwide call for a new civil rights law to ensure the full equality of Americans with disabilities and to protect them from discrimination began to gain momentum. N.O.D. joined with other disability organizations in a campaign for a new disability law‚Äîthe Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The ADA embodied the original IYDP goal to achieve the full participation of people with disabilities in American life.
In 1989, James Brady, President Ronald Reagan's former Press Secretary, joined N.O.D. as Vice Chairman. An impassioned advocate for all Americans with disabilities, Brady had become a national hero when he sustained a near-fatal brain injury when he was shot during the 1981 assassination attempt on the President. He served as chief N.O.D. spokesperson for the ADA, through his ‚ÄúCalling on America‚Äù campaign. Over the ensuing months, he and other N.O.D. leaders gave speeches, lobbied, pressed the case for the ADA with relevant Congressional Committees, and, perhaps most importantly, enlisted nationwide grassroots support.
As a result, the U.S. House and U.S. Senate passed the ADA ‚Äî knowing President Bush had pledged to sign it. N.O.D. representatives played key roles in the ADA signing ceremony on July 26, 1990, including a blessing by N.O.D. Board Member Rev. Wilke. Some 3,000 people, including advocates with disabilities from all across the country, gathered to hear President Bush's charge: ‚Äú Let the shameful walls of exclusion come tumbling down.‚Äù
Taking on the World
Even as N.O.D. and its allies were helping to change the perceptions of and approaches toward disability in the United States, powerful efforts were underway to do so worldwide. While President of the U.S. Council for the International Year of Disabled Persons, Alan Reich became the first wheelchair user to address the U.N. General Assembly. In his speech he called on all nations to strengthen their commitment to the world's half-billion people with disabilities. Following Reich's second U.N. address in late 1982, the General Assembly unanimously adopted the World Programme of Action Concerning Disabled Persons ‚Äî an extensive prescription for what every nation, organization, religion and community should do in order to promote the worldwide goal of full participation by people with disabilities.
In 1985, N.O.D. created the World Committee on Disability to encourage chiefs of state, U.N. agency heads, and religious and international organization leaders to support the U.N. World Programme of Action. The World Committee suggested to Pope John Paul II that he host the world's first Vatican Conference on Disability. At this event in 1992, the Pope urged the audience of 9,000, which included N.O.D. representatives Alan Reich, Rev. Wilke, Mary Jane Owen, Ginny Thornburgh and Dick Thornburgh (an N.O.D. founding Director), to expand the participation of people with disabilities in religious life.
In 1995, N.O.D.'s World Committee, in partnership with the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute, created the Franklin D. Roosevelt International Disability Award to recognize and inspire nations to work toward the World Programme of Action's goal of full participation. The Award, which includes a $50,000 cash grant (funded by the Institute) and a bust of FDR, was first presented in San Francisco in 1996 to South Korea. Beginning in 2001, World Committee member and Wheelchair Foundation founder Kenneth Behring augmented the prize with a donation of 1,000 wheelchairs for the winning nation.
A New Decade Brings Fresh Programs and Priorities?
As N.O.D. began its second decade in 1992, the ADA gave new impetus to the disability movement and a fresh public awareness of the critical issue of the employment of people with disabilities. N.O.D made the case that it was good business to hire people with disabilities, and enlisted allies with clout - business leaders. The CEO Council, founded in 1992 under the chairmanship of BusinessWeek President and Publisher Jack Patten, an N.O.D. Board Member, rapidly gained 200 members. The Council sponsored a series of ten conferences all across the country to acquaint the business community with the ADA requirements. BusinessWeek has given powerful support to this program through a series of donated advertisements that lists the members of the CEO Council and endorses N.O.D.'s message that it's ability, not disability, that counts. This support from BusinessWeek continues under the leadership of the magazine's current President and Publisher William Kupper, who is also an N.O.D. Board Member. These donated public service ads, featuring both former and present N.O.D. Vice Chairmen Jim Brady and Christopher Reeve, have been valued at more than $6 million.
In 1992, N.O.D. also launched its signature direct service program, Start on Success Student Internship Program (S.O.S.). Charles Dey, founder of A Better Chance (ABC), and former Dean at Dartmouth, directs this program, which provides paid internships to teenage students with disabilities so that they eventually will be better positioned to join the workforce after graduation. SOS provides its participants with paid internships so that they eventually will be able to join the work force rather than the welfare rolls. The program began in East Haven, Conn., and has expanded to Philadelphia, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, and sites in rural Alabama and Ohio. To date, more than 500 students have participated in SOS.
Harris Statistics Reflect a Mandate
One of N.O.D.'s greatest contributions to the disability movement has been its Public Opinion Survey Program, conducted through the Louis Harris & Associates polls. Launched in 1987, this program has provided a much-needed baseline for the nation on disability issues and progress, and has helped the nation to set goals and measure accomplishments. Thus far, N.O.D. has commissioned comprehensive surveys of the participation of people with disabilities in American life in 1990, 1994, 1998, and 2000. The latest survey is a millennial benchmark for employment, income levels, education, access to transportation and health care, and involvement in political, religious, and community life. N.O.D. has commissioned Harris to conduct additional surveys on a variety of subjects, including the attitudes of top business leaders toward the ADA, the American people toward their fellow citizens with disabilities, and opinions of people with disabilities during Presidential elections. The participation gaps identified by these surveys have guided N.O.D.'s programs and have been used by many disability organizations, business leaders, legislators, government at all levels, and the news media to help understand disability issues.
N.O.D. Campaign Enhances the FDR Memorial
Sometimes statistics are not necessary to document that something is amiss. Such was the case when the U.S. Government released the details of the proposed Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial; the plan did not depict Roosevelt's disability, despite the fact that he had never taken an unassisted step since contracting polio in 1921 and that he used a wheelchair daily during his 12 years in the White House. N.O.D. Board Chairman Michael Deland in 1995 launched N.O.D.'s campaign to right this wrong, and organized demonstrations, enlisted the support of FDR's descendents, his biographers, the media and the American public ‚Äî 73 percent of whom, as polled by Harris Poll, endorsed the depiction of the disability. Ultimately, it took an act of Congress to mandate that a statue of FDR in his wheelchair be added to the Memorial.
Following this legislative success, N.O.D. inaugurated its Rendezvous with Destiny Campaign, which under the leadership of co-chairpersons Michael Deland and FDR granddaughter Anna Eleanor Roosevelt raised the funds for the new statue. Thanks to major contributions by N.O.D. Board member Peter Kovler and Gordon and Llura Gund, the campaign successfully raised $1.65 million‚Äîwith school children making the first donations. The statue is now a popular landmark in the nation's capital and an inspiration to visitors, disabled and non-disabled, from throughout the world.
N.O.D. Continues to Expand Opportunities
The end of N.O.D.'s second decade saw other noteworthy accomplishments, among them N.O.D.'s "Vote 2000" campaign, which inspired grassroots efforts nationwide to bring voters with disabilities to the polls in record numbers.
In one of his first official acts, on February 1, 2001, President George W. Bush announced his New Freedom Initiative, designed to inspire the nation to continue the progress and achieve the goal of full and equal participation of people with disabilities in American life. The President's announcement drew heavily on results of N.O.D.'s Harris surveys that have consistently demonstrated that people with disabilities are pervasively disadvantaged in comparison to citizens without disabilities. N.O.D. worked closely with the White House staff to organize the East Room ceremony.
N.O.D.'s Religion and Disability program met its goal in 2001 of enrolling 2,000 committed congregations nationwide in the Accessible Congregations Campaign, and began a new program working with seminaries, where the important message of accessibility will be heard by future religious leaders. N.O.D. also launched the EmployAbility Program to expand job opportunities for millions of Americans with disabilities who are out of the workforce, but want to work and contribute to America like everyone else.
The Aftermath of 9/11; New Challenge for N.O.D.
Sometimes, N.O.D. is able to shape the national agenda; at other times, it must respond to events beyond its control. September 11, 2001 was one of those times, and it inspired a new N.O.D. program: the Emergency Preparedness Initiative. The terrorist attacks made all too clear how critical it is for all Americans — including Americans with disabilities — to be as prepared as possible for potential terrorist threats and other emergencies.
N.O.D. has taken the lead in ensuring that emergency planning of communities across the country include people with disabilities. Because of their resourcefulness and experience in meeting challenges, they have much to contribute to this effort, thus helping make America safer and more secure for all citizens, with and without disabilities.
Partners Facilitate Achievements
N.O.D. owes its success throughout its 20-year history largely to the people who have believed in the importance of its mission, and who have contributed energy, time, and funds to make it succeed. In addition to the individuals mentioned above, and throughout this report N.O.D. is deeply grateful to the many thousands of people nationwide, with and without disabilities, who have enthusiastically joined in furthering our mission.
N.O.D.'s dedicated Board Members over the past 20 years have come from all walks of life. Some have disabilities while others do not. They include the heads of corporations, executives from national organizations, and leaders from our community. Among them are such well-known individuals as past Vice-Chairman James Brady, current Vice-Chairman Christopher Reeve, and Honorary Chairman President George H. W. Bush. Board members have demonstrated extraordinary leadership and involvement. Day in and day out for ten years, publishing veteran Arlene Anns has contributed her time and knowledge on publications and communications. Retired advertising executive Ken Roman has given hundreds of hours of his time to shaping N.O.D.'s message, print ads, and public service announcements. Bob Saner of Powers, Pyles, Sutter & Verville, PC has donated his services as N.O.D. attorney since he drafted the N.O.D. charter in 1982.
Funding for our organization has grown from $100,000 in 1982 to $2 million annually today, thanks to the generosity of numerous individuals, corporations, and foundations. Several Board members, led by Rich DeVos and John Rosenwald, have donated every year since our founding, with their contributions totaling more than one-half million dollars each. N.O.D. also has received major support of more than one-half million dollars from such loyal contributors over the years as Merrill Lynch, JC Penney, McGraw-Hill, UPS, Aetna, the Mott Foundation, and the Pew Memorial Trust. In addition, in-kind support made possible by Board member Stephen Hammerman at Merrill Lynch, Harold McGraw III of The McGraw-Hill Companies and others have included the services of auditors, publishers, law firms, advertising agencies, and equipment manufacturers that have enabled N.O.D. to focus its resources on programs aimed at directly improving the lives of people with disabilities.
The N.O.D. staff‚Äîthe best team of its kind in the world‚Äîincludes disabled and non-disabled members alike, all dedicated to the full participation of people with disabilities in American life. These dedicated individuals have organized hundreds of conferences, awards ceremonies, rallies, speeches and press conferences. They have produced hundreds of newsletters and publications, all furthering the N.O.D. mission. And they have never forgotten that the object of our great cause is not some abstract goal, but real improvements in the day-to-day lives of millions of real Americans‚Äîour fellow citizens with disabilities.
America still has a long way to go to close the gaps in levels of participation between people with and without disabilities. But the landscape has changed dramatically, and much has been accomplished over the past 20 years. More than ever before, people with disabilities are present throughout American society‚Äîcarrying on their daily lives as workers, consumers, students, neighbors, and volunteers‚Äîand contributing greatly to our national and community life. Curb cuts, ramps, Braille signage, and TV captioning are now commonplace. People with disabilities serve in leadership positions as Cabinet members, members of Congress, and leaders of corporations, congregations and organizations. More than ever before, they are employed, paying taxes, and supporting their families. They are traveling and socializing more. Record numbers are voting and completing their education. Yes, in all phases of American life, people with disabilities are now a rich part of the scene.
N.O.D. is proud to have been at the center of this progress and is committed to a better life for people with disabilities everywhere. And, like people with disabilities throughout America and the world, we look forward eagerly to even greater progress in the decades ahead.
- N.O.D. Board Chairmen
- Richard DeVos, President, Amway, 1982-1986
- John Coady, Executive Vice President, Mars International, 1986-1988
- Vincent Sarni, Chairman and CEO, PPG, 1988-1990
- Joseph Mathewson, President, Chicago National Bank, 1990-1993
- Philip Beekman, Chairman and CEO, Hook SupRx, Inc., 1993-1995
- Michael R. Deland, Former Chairman, White House Council on Environmental Quality, 1995-present
GETTING OUT THE MESSAGE
N.O.D. Communications and Outreach
Groundbreaking PSA Airs Nationally
The N.O.D. Communications program broke new ground in 2001. Through pro bono advertisements, new communications tools, and opportunities to weigh in on issues of importance to the disability community, N.O.D. not only received widespread attention but also shined a light on the larger issue of expanding participation of people with disabilities in American life.
In 2001, N.O.D. launched a new public service announcement, which combats negative stereotypes of people with disabilities. This PSA, which has been airing on television stations across the nation, was previewed at the U.S. Department of Labor's "National Summit on the 21st Century Workforce" on June 20, 2001. The PSA features celebrities with and without disabilities: N.O.D. Vice Chairman Christopher Reeve, Angela Bassett, Harrison Ford, Wyclef Jean, Camryn Manheim, John Stewart and Stevie Wonder. They all help carry the message of the PSA that "it's ability not disability that counts." The PSA was underwritten by American Express, The McGraw-Hill Companies, Microsoft, and the Presidential Task Force on the Employment of Adults with Disabilities, and was created by associates of N.O.D. with final editing assistance by the advertising firm Foote Cone & Belding.
New Accessible Website is Launched
N.O.D.'s website, http://www.nod.org, underwent a facelift in 2001, when a new site was designed based on "gap areas" in life activities identified in the N.O.D./Harris Surveys of Americans with Disabilities such as employment, education, transportation, politics, healthcare, community, religion and technology. Data from recent surveys, as well as frequently updated disability news, resources and original articles are now easily accessed by a growing number of website visitors. Diverse disability writers contribute to the site, including award winning assistive technology writer John Williams, N.O.D. Board Member and author Brooke Ellison, and disability statistician and N.O.D. Senior Policy Advisor Dr. Gerry Hendershot.
The new website's design is accessible to visitors with and without disabilities. It is ‚ÄúBobby‚Äù and Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act compliant. (Section 508 requires that all electronic and information technology purchased or used by the Federal Government — including websites — be accessible to people with disabilities). The site's built-in content management system enables people and organizations to directly contribute articles and calendar events to the site, thus creating a true disability community website.
N.O.D. Disability Surveys Gain Press Attention
N.O.D./Harris surveys continued to garner much media attention throughout 2001. In news stories that ran in the Boston Globe, the Washington Post and on National Public Radio, N.O.D./ Harris survey data on community participation, employment and other issues are continuously cited. In addition, President Bush used the 2000 N.O.D./ Harris Survey of Americans with Disabilities as a foundation for the New Freedom Initiative - the disability policy for the Bush White House.
Weighing in on Key Issues for the Disability Community
N.O.D. spoke out on a number of different issues of concern and interest to the disability community throughout 2001. N.O.D. was an active supporter of the Structured Settlements Protection Act, which was passed by Congress in late 2001, and requires court oversight and approval for injury victims who choose to sell payments from a structured settlement to a third-party company. N.O.D. also issued statements on Supreme Court decisions in Garrett v. Alabama and Toyota v. Williams, and weighed in on voting reform. In addition, as 2001 was the 11th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), N.O.D.'s Director of the Community Participation Program Nancy Starnes moderated a panel for members of Congress at the U.S. Capitol on the status of the ADA since its passage.
In the new year, N.O.D. will continue its communications and outreach efforts to bring attention to the need to expand the participation of people with disabilities in all areas of life.
ENSURING EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS
Emergency Preparedness Initiative
Task Force Convened
Soon after September 11th, N.O.D. convened a Task Force of government officials, disaster relief agencies and disability leaders to discuss emergency preparedness issues for people with disabilities. It was discovered that while many emergency plans have been created over the years, people with disabilities have not always been included in their development, nor do plans always address the special needs of people with disabilities.
To help steer the disability community's response to the tragedies of September 11th, the Task Force developed a Statement of Principles, which provides guidance to the disability community for engaging in emergency preparedness, and highlights responsibilities of key leaders - governors, mayors, businesses, Office of Homeland Security, disability organizations and disaster relief agencies - for including people with disabilities in emergency planning. The Task Force met three times, including twice at the White House.
Polling Data Show People with Disabilities Unprepared
As part of the Task Force project, N.O.D. commissioned a Harris survey on emergency preparedness among people with disabilities. According to the Harris Poll, 61 percent of people with disabilities say they have not made plans to quickly and safely evacuate their homes in case of an emergency, and 50 percent say no plans have been made to safely evacuate their workplaces. This information was disseminated widely throughout the media, government, and disaster relief and disability organizations.
Key Officials Express Support
Because of the gravity of this issue, N.O.D. established the Emergency Preparedness Initiative in late 2001. One of the first steps taken in this new program was for N.O.D. to share the Statement of Principles with President Bush. In addition, representatives of N.O.D. met with Governor Tom Ridge, Director of the White House Office of Homeland Security to brief him on the need to include people with disabilities in the planning process. He too was presented with a copy of the Statement of Principles and it was agreed that N.O.D. will work cooperatively with Governor Ridge and the Office of Homeland Security.
In 2002, with thanks to a grant from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, N.O.D. will conduct a public awareness campaign to ensure that people with disabilities are included in emergency planning. Finally, N.O.D. will continue to cooperate and work with government agencies, disaster relief agencies and the disability community toward the goal of ensuring maximum preparedness for people with disabilities.
ENCOURAGING INTERNATIONAL COMMITMENT
The World Committee on Disability
FDR International Disability Award
On July 2, 2001 the World Committee on Disability - the international arm of N.O.D. - in partnership with the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute, presented the Franklin D. Roosevelt International Disability Award at the United Nations to Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of the Kingdom of Thailand. The Award, which was established in 1995, is presented annually to a nation making noteworthy national progress toward fulfillment of the U.N. World Programme of Action Concerning Disabled Persons. The Award consists of a bust of FDR, a $50,000 cash prize from the Roosevelt Institute for a non-governmental disability organization in the winning nation, and 1,000 wheelchairs donated by World Committee member and founder of the Wheelchair Foundation, Mr. Kenneth E. Behring.
Applications for the Award are received from all regions of the globe. The World Committee coordinates the review of the applications by judges who are international disability experts and provides recommendations to the Board of Trustees of the Roosevelt Institute for final decision. Interest in the Award is stimulated largely by communications with chiefs of state, ambassadors and permanent representatives to the U.N., as well as by the international media attention the Award receives on an annual basis. In 2001, CNN, BBC and the Associated Press all filed stories on the Award presentation to Thailand.
Over Six-Hundred Million with Disabilities Worldwide
The World Committee promotes the commitment of all nations to the U.N. World Programme of Action Concerning Disabled Persons. The World Programme calls for full and equal participation of persons with disabilities in all aspects of life in their respective countries regardless of the level of development. Established in 1985, the World Committee urges the leaders of the U.N., its member nations and international organizations to make the full participation of people with disabilities - of which there are over six-hundred million worldwide - an ongoing priority. The Committee is comprised of people with and without disabilities from all continents.
Through the Award, the World Committee will continue to encourage governments throughout the world to include progress on disability issues as a national priority. In addition, the World Committee will join the international disability movement in calling for and working toward a U.N. Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities.
IMPROVING EMPLOYMENT LEVELS
EmployAbility, CEO Council, Start on Success
Focus on Growth Sectors
Despite the downturn in the economy, N.O.D. is determined to improve the employment levels of people with disabilities. Of all working age people with disabilities, 44% who say they are able to work are unemployed. N.O.D. conducts three programs to increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities - the EmployAbility Program, the CEO Council and the Start on Success (SOS) Student Internship Program.
The EmployAbility Program emphasizes improving the rehabilitation and retraining of workers with disabilities ages 45 and over. In addition, the program seeks to remove attitudinal barriers, and alleviate employer confusion surrounding hiring practices, which often pose challenges to people with disabilities entering and remaining in the workforce. The Program works with industries that are experiencing rapid growth, such as technology and health care, and encourages them to reach out to people with disabilities as a source of labor.
Generating Awareness and Developing Partnerships
In 2001, EmployAbility launched a large-scale outreach and awareness program directed at CEOs, hiring managers and human resource professionals in the healthcare industry. As a result, the program received press attention in the Society for Human Resource Management magazine Mosiacs, Executive Update, and Professional Medical Assistant magazine. Also, as part of this outreach, N.O.D. formed a strategic alliance with HirePotential, which provides N.O.D. with a partner that develops technical job skills for individuals with disabilities and helps place them in jobs. A partnership has also been established with the Institute for Diversity in Health Management so that N.O.D. can help the Institute recruit people with disabilities into the healthcare field.
Also in 2001, N.O.D. took an active role in employment related conferences. N.O.D. Board member and Chairman of the Harris Poll Humphrey Taylor presented findings from the 2000 N.O.D./Harris Survey of Americans with Disabilities at the Cornell Employment and Disability Policy Institute Conference. Craig Gray, EmployAbility Program Director led a panel discussion at the National Workplace Forum sponsored by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Virginia Commonwealth University.
Commitment from Top Companies
As part of its employment agenda, N.O.D.'s CEO Council is comprised of over 100 leading companies and CEOs that are committed to the increased employment of people with disabilities. Council members are recognized in donated public service advertisements in BusinessWeek. These ads ran a dozen times in national and regional editions in 2001. N.O.D. periodically sends information and materials to members of the CEO Council to keep them informed on key issues relating to people with disabilities. In 2001 members received information on disaster planning for people with disabilities, copies of N.O.D./Harris surveys, as well as other resources.
Work Experience for Young People with Disabilities
N.O.D.'s Start on Success (SOS) Student Internship Program provides paid internships to high school students with disabilities so they can acquire the skills and confidence needed to succeed in an increasingly competitive job market. Interns are paired with a job coach and an on-site supervisor and work 10-15 hours a week for 8-30 weeks per academic year.
In 2001, the 500th student completed an SOS internship. The past school year brought a 45% increase in number of internships and now is in operation in nineteen sites in Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and throughout Ohio and Alabama. Ninety-two percent of SOS interns have completed the program successfully and have gone on to further employment, school, or job training. Typically only twenty percent of high school graduates with disabilities go on to such a bright future.
People with disabilities represent the single largest and most diverse minority in the United States, and are a major untapped source of high quality employees. Therefore, N.O.D. will continue its efforts to make employment a reality for more people with disabilities.
EXPANDING COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION
Community Partnership Program, National Partnership Program
Real Change Takes Place in Communities
Since its founding 20 years ago, N.O.D. has been committed to the principle that real change for people with disabilities occurs in the communities in which they live. Two of N.O.D.'s longest-running programs, the Community Partnership Program (CPP - founded 1982) and National Partnership Program (NPP - founded 1986) have worked throughout N.O.D.'s history to help close the large gaps in community participation that exist between people with and without disabilities. In 2001, both of these flagship programs continued to thrive and expand in new directions.
Focus On City Hall
Since its creation in 1982, the CPP has worked to keep liaisons and advocates in over 4,500 towns and cities informed and active in promoting the participation of citizens with disabilities in community life. This year a new CPP Director was hired - Nancy Starnes, former Mayor of Sparta, NJ. Under her direction, the CPP changed its focus to the recognition and promotion of comprehensive community accessibility through awarding a single community as the $25,000 grand prize winner of the N.O.D./UPS Accessible America Award. Other changes include targeted communications to the nation's mayors. In addition, the CPP now has a dues paying membership of communities across America.
Mayors, as CPP Representatives, alongside individuals with and without disabilities, identify local needs, set objectives and put local plans into action. The CPP supports these committed mayors efforts by supplying disability related information on best practices, emergency preparedness, legislation, research data, and other valuable resource materials. Citizen representatives who had served as the community liaison in the past were invited to maintain their connection to the CPP through N.O.D.'s Community Contacts Network.
In 2002, the CPP looks to add more mayors as representatives to its newly revitalized program. As a benefit of membership in the Community Partnership Program, the CPP will create a private members-only section on N.O.D.'s website where mayors will find quick and accurate information to enhance their knowledge of disability issues.
Competitions Recognize Community Action
Working with United Parcel Service, N.O.D. awarded 10 communities across the United States in 2001 for expanding participation of people with disabilities through exceptional local initiatives. This year's $10,000 grand prizewinner was Boston, MA for its community mentoring program, "Partners for Youth with Disabilities". In this program, adults with disabilities are paired with young people who share a similar disability and provide mentorship on social, academic, and career opportunities.
National Leadership and Local Action
The National Partnership Program (NPP) consists of 40 major national non-disability organizations, whose combined membership totals over 75 million people. These organizations work with N.O.D. to promote the full and equal participation of people with disabilities in community life through their national, state and local affiliates. In addition, N.O.D. works with these National Partners to help them incorporate programs to increase outreach to people with disabilities in the communities they serve, and to encourage greater participation of employees, members and volunteers with disabilities throughout their organizations. Through an annual grant from Aetna, Inc., N.O.D. presents $1,000 to each NPP member organization to conduct a cash awards competition to recognize outstanding disability programs of local affiliates.
Awarding and Informing Association Work
In 2001, the NPP expanded from 36 to 40 members, adding to its ranks AARP, the American Red Cross, the Girl Scouts of the USA and the National Association of Elementary School Principals. In addition to giving out awards, N.O.D. created a number of useful guides for member organizations. These included widely distributed disability etiquette and meeting accessibility guides, as well as an extensive online guide that gives ideas and information on initiating disability-related service projects. N.O.D. also increased its contacts with member organizations, meeting in person with representatives of different groups, conducting disability awareness talks, and initiating an NPP "E-newsletter," which keeps member organizations informed on important disability news.
In 2002 the NPP will promote best practices in disability-related service projects among its members and promote them through its award programs and via the N.O.D. website.
National Partners of N.O.D.
- American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging
- American Association of Museums
- American Association of University Women
- American Bar Association
- American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees
- American Institute of Architects
- American Lawyers Auxiliary
- The American Legion
- American Legion Auxiliary
- American Library Association
- American Red Cross*
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of America
- Boy Scouts of America
- Boys and Girls Clubs of America
- Camp Fire U.S.A.
- The Child Welfare League of America
- Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
- General Federation of Women's Clubs
- Girl Scouts of the U.S.A.*
- League of Women Voters of the United States
- National 4-H Council
- National Association of Secondary School Principals
- National Association of Counties
- National Association of Elementary School Principals*
- National Association of Home Builders
- National Association of Independent Schools
- National Association of Towns and Townships
- National Catholic Office for Persons with Disabilities
- National Foundation for Women Legislators
- National School Boards Association
- Older Women's League
- Pilot International Foundation
- Sister Cities International
- Telephone Pioneers of America
- Travelers Aid International
- The United States Conference of Mayors
- Women in Community Service
- YMCA of the USA
- YWCA of the USA
*new member in 2001
N.O.D./UPS 2001 Community Award Competition Winners
- $10,000 Grand Prize
- Boston, MA
- $3,500 First Place Prize
- North Providence, RI (Cities over 50,000)
- Oak Island, NC (Cities under 50,000)
- Sonoma County, CA (Counties)
- $2,000 Second Place Prize
- Bloomington, IN (Cities over 50,000)
- El Cerrito, CA (Cities under 50,000)
- Pitt County, NC (Counties)
- $1000 Third Place Prize
- Las Cruces, NM (Cities over 50,000)
- Southampton, NY (Cities under 50,000)
- Alachua County, FL (Counties)
CREATING ACCESSIBLE CONGREGATIONS
Religion & Disability Program
Elimination of Barriers - Physical and Attitudinal
Since it was founded thirteen years ago, the Religion and Disability Program has worked with local congregations, national faith groups and seminaries to remove barriers of architecture, communications and attitudes that prevent people with disabilities from full and active religious participation.
Early in 2001, the Religion and Disability Program enrolled the 2,000th congregation in N.O.D.'s Accessible Congregations Campaign. The campaign enlists congregations that commit to identifying and removing barriers and to welcoming people with disabilities. Committed congregations are listed by state on the N.O.D. website at http://www.nod.org.
Guides and Conferences Ensure Religious Access
The Religion and Disability Program's recent booklet, Money and Ideas: Creative Approaches to Congregational Access, created in partnership with the Alban Institute, describes creative initiatives and fundraising strategies used by 50 congregations to maximize accessibility. This publication joins N.O.D.'s award-winning series of interfaith guides, That All May Worship, Loving Justice, and From Barriers to Bridges, all of which help religious communities identify and remove barriers to a full life of faith for people with disabilities. Over 50,000 copies of That All May Worship, now in its sixth edition, have been distributed.
Each year, the Religion and Disability Program sponsors and participates in "That All May Worship" conferences throughout the country. These community-based conferences bring together disability and religious leadership to improve access - both physical and spiritual - in congregations of all faiths. In 2001, there were twenty-six conferences, bringing the total number of conferences held in communities across America since 1993 to one hundred and forty-two.
In 2002, the Religion and Disability program will focus on seminaries by facilitating conferences on disability issues from a theological and practical perspective. In addition, the Accessible Congregations Campaign will continue enrolling congregations, and "That All May Worship" conferences will be conducted nationwide.
INVESTORS IN N.O.D.'S WORK
The National Organization on Disability gratefully acknowledges the generosity of the following corporations, foundations and individuals who donated to our work in 2001. Through their support they are helping to expand the participation and contribution of people with disabilities in all aspects of American life.
General Donors to N.O.D.
- Century Club
- $100,000 and above
- Aetna, Inc.
- The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
- Charles Stewart Mott Foundation
- $50,000 to $99,999
- Alcoa, Inc.
- Mr. & Mrs. Bruce Gelb
- Charles Engelhard Foundation
- Mr. & Mrs. Michael R. Deland
- Mr. & Mrs. Stephen L. Hammerman
- Hewlett-Packard Company
- Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc
- Netherlands-America Community Trust, Inc.
- Roger S. Firestone Foundation
- Mr. & Mrs. E. John Rosenwald, Jr.
- UPS Foundation
- $25,000 to $49,999
- American Express Company
- Bristol-Myers Squibb
- Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation
- Mr. & Mrs. Richard DeVos
- Mr. Stephen Feinberg & Ms. Susan Foote
- Mr. Greg Hughes
- Mr. & Mrs. John M. Hughes
- Mr. & Mrs. Michael A. Hughes
- J.C. Penney Company, Inc.
- Philip Morris Companies, Inc.
- Mr. Jeffrey Reich
- Lucy Rockefeller Waletsky, MD
- Mr. Frederick Whittemore
- $10,000 to $24,999
- Blum-Kovler Foundation
- Citigroup, Inc.
- Compaq Computer Corporation
- DaimlerChrysler Corporation
- Eastman Kodak Company
- Exxon Mobil Corporation
- Mrs. Susan Reeves Deland
- Gannett Broadcasting
- H.J. Heinz Company
- Household International, Inc.
- Johnson & Johnson
- Metropolitan Life Insurance Company
- Milbank Foundation
- Northrop Grumman Corporation
- Pathways Awareness Foundation
- Pfizer Inc.
- Potomac Electric Power Company
- Mr. Laurance Rockefeller
- $5,000 - $9,999
- Air Transport Association of America
- Mr. & Mrs. Philip Beekman
- Calpine Corporation
- Hartford Life, Inc.
- Island Foundation, Inc.
- Mr. Samuel C. Johnson
- Kemper Insurance Companies
- Marriott International, Inc.
- Ms. Evelyn S. Nef
- Paul Wendell Whitaker Trust
- Mr. Robert C. Pew II
- Prudential Financial
- R. P. Simmons Family Foundation
- Mr. & Mrs. Kenneth Roman
- Mr. & Mrs. Bud Smith
- Steelcase, Inc.
- T. Rowe Price Group, Inc.
- Wal-Mart Stores
- Wilmer, Cutler and Pickering
- Xerox Corporation
- $1,000 to $4,999
- ABC, Inc.
- Alex Lee, Inc.
- Allegheny Technologies
- Ambassador & Mrs. Alfred Moses
- American Airlines
- American Home Products Corporation/Wyeth
- Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc.
- Bayer Foundation
- Mr. & Mrs. John J. Boyle, Jr.
- Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc.
- Buhl Foundation
- Chevron Corporation
- The CIT Group, Inc.
- Mr. & Mrs. Howard Clery
- Comcast Corporation
- Ms. Brooke Ellison & Mrs. Jean Ellison
- Ernst & Young
- Mr. & Mrs. Theodore Frankenbach
- General Electric Company
- The Gillette Company
- The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company
- Mr. & Mrs. Craig Gray
- Graybar Electric Company, Inc.
- Great Lake Center for Independent Living, Detroit
- Hasbro, Inc.
- Hilton Hotels Corporation
- Howrey, Simon, Arnold & White
- Huntsman Corporation
- Slade Gorton & Co. Ltd.
- Illinois Tool Works, Inc.
- The Jordan Company, LLC
- Mr. & Mrs. Martin Keane
- Keebler Foods Company
- KeySpan Corporation
- Kmart Corporation
- Ms. Kelsey Marshall
- The May Depatment Stores Company
- Michael T. Rose Companies
- Motorola, Inc.
- Olin Corporation
- Panasonic/Matsushita Electric Corporation of America
- Pitney Bowes, Inc.
- PPG Industries, Inc.
- Mr. & Mrs. Charles Queenan, Esq.
- Raytheon Company
- Rockwell Collins
- Mr. & Mrs. David Roosevelt
- Richard Salem, Esq.
- Schering-Plough Corporation
- Sears, Roebuck & Co.
- Shared Services Group
- Ms. Jennifer Sheehy
- State Farm Insurance Companies
- Tennesse Disability Coalition
- Mr. W. Reid Thompson
- The Thomson Corporation
- Towers Perrin
- ULLICO, Inc.
- W. R. Grace & Co.
- Wesley Theological Seminary
- Ms. Kate Roosevelt Whitney
- Fisher Scientific International
- Wm. Wrigley, Jr. Company
- $100 to $999
- Allied Services
- American Iron and Steel Institute
- Mr. Charlton H. Ames
- Mr. & Mrs. Philip Anns
- Mr. C.W. Balis, III
- Mr. & Mrs. Richard A. Bishop, Esq.
- Mr. & Mrs. William Bancroft
- Ms. Ann-Carolyn Bennett
- Mr. Samuel Bernstein
- Mr. Ferdinand Colloredo-Mansfeld
- Mr. & Mrs. Justin Dart
- Mr. Peter Dean
- Mr. Raymond Glazier, Jr.
- Mr. Wilfred Goodwyn
- Ms. Marian Heiskell
- Mr. Taylor Hines
- Mr. & Mrs. Martin Hoffman
- Mr. Dennis Howard
- John Heinz Institute
- I. King Jordan, Ph.D.
- Mr. & Mrs. Peter H. Jost
- Dr. & Mrs. Young Woo Kang
- Mr. & Mrs. Thomas M. Keane
- Mr. Raymond Lavietes
- Mr. & Mrs. Duk Ja Lee
- Ms. Connie McCracken
- Ms. Lee Miller
- Mr. & Mrs. Samuel Mitchell
- Mr. Rowland T. Moriarty
- Mrs. Susan W. Paine
- Pfizer Foundation Matching Gifts Program
- PipeVine, Inc.
- Mr. & Mrs. Alan A. Reich
- Mr. Christopher D. Roosevelt
- Mr. & Mrs. Alan A. Rubin
- Mr. & Mrs. Robert Seamans
- Dr. & Mrs. James H. Semans
- Mr. & Mrs. Robert C. Simpson
- St. Bartholomew's Church, New York City
- Bennett Stein, MD
- Mrs. Sharlie Sudduth
- Mr. & Mrs. Humphrey Taylor
- Mr. & Mrs. James Toffey
- Ms. Mary A. Toman
- Mr. Anthony Tucker
- Rev & Mrs. John Twiname
- Wireless Foundation
Special Giving Opportunities
N.O.D. welcomes planned giving. These are special donations where the gift of assets may provide the donor with particular advantages. Planned gifts should always be made with the advice of your attorney or financial advisor. If you are interested in giving to N.O.D. through a bequest, charitable lead trust, charitable remainder trust, or in donating life insurance, please contact the President of N.O.D. at 202-293-5960 or TDD 202-293-5968.