By: Zahavit Paz
You know the old saying: “If you want something done right, you’d better do it yourself.”
When it comes to finding a champion for your rights as a learning disabled person, no truer words were ever spoken.
Here’s the good news: if you suffer from Dyslexia, ADD, or ADHD you are entitled to certain inalienable rights under the Federal Americans With Disabilities Act. This means that – once your condition has been properly diagnosed – you are entitled to receive certain invaluable dispensations that will allow you to compete as a student at school or an employee in the workplace. That’s the law.
But now the bad news: laws don’t work unless people invoke them. Many sad cases exist where institutions seem disinclined to follow the law. For instance, some universities have refused to provide their LD students with dispensations to help them study. Many corporations have refused to recognize their LD employees’ special needs.
Enough is enough!
LD Resources Foundation was created to help you, the Learning Disabled person, pursue an illuminated path of self-advocacy. Self-advocacy means putting your own needs first! It means improving your self by:
- a) knowing your rights;
- b) knowing who can help you facilitate your rights;
- c) demanding your rights when they are not offered to you directly; and
- d) enjoying your rights once they ve been obtained.
The bottom line with self-advocacy is this: NO ONE CARES MORE ABOUT YOU THAN YOU DO! Don’t wait for someone else to wander along and offer to change your life for the better. Empower yourself! Sit up and take notice of all the tools available to help you! Then . . . go get them, and improve your life!
Self Advocacy Links & Resources
These are lists of agencies that serve people with disabilities. They provide useful information on advocacy, funding, career assistance, services and academic assistance.
ADA Americans with Disabilities Act–https://www.ada.gov
Publications and videos that answer these questions and more: What is the ADA? Who is a person with a disability? Who must comply with the ADA? Where can you call to ask questions about the ADA?
AHEAD is a professional association committed to full participation of persons with disabilities in postsecondary education.
Jo Anne Simon Law Office–http://joannesimon.com
Jo Anne Simon, P.C. provides direct representation to people with disabilities.
Center for Parent Information and Resources–http://www.parentcenterhub.org/nichcy-resources/
The CPIR is pleased to give the home to many of the resources developed by NICHCY, the National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities, whose funding ended in 2013.
A great resource for students searching for a college that will provide them with the programs they need.
U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division –https://www.justice.gov/crt
New York City Commission on Human Rightshttp://www1.nyc.gov/site/cchr/index.page
The New York City Commission on Human Rights is charged with the enforcement of the Human Rights Law, Title 8 of the Administrative Code of the City of New York, and with educating the public and encouraging positive community relations.
Wright’s Law – http://www.wrightslaw.com
Parents, educators, advocates, and attorneys come to Wrightslaw for accurate, reliable information about special education law, education law, and advocacy for children with disabilities.
NYC Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities ––http://www.nyc.gov/html/mopd/html/home/home.shtml
The Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities (MOPD), in operation since 1972, works to ensure that New Yorkers with disabilities can lead happy, healthy and productive lives. MOPD works closely with other City offices and over 50 agencies to provide information on accessible programs, transportation, employment, health services, activities, and other resources to the over 948,000 New Yorkers with disabilities and the millions of people with disabilities visiting New York City every year.
Advocates for Children – http://www.advocatesforchildren.org
Advocates for Children of New York works on behalf of children who are at greatest risk for school-based discrimination and/or academic failure due to poverty, disability, race, ethnicity, immigrant or English Language Learner status, sexual orientation, gender identity, homelessness, or involvement in the foster care or juvenile justice systems.