This year the waves of information have been high at times, often, and the content can shift or change. And here comes the much anticipated COVID Vaccines. This video was created to address some of the most common questions that may rise to the surface and where to go to find how the vaccine is rolling out in Washington State. Visit the Department of Health for the most up-to-date vaccine distribution plans.
Learn about the new ways in which you can testify in a committee hearing of the Washington State Legislature. Due to COVID, advocacy or testimony with the Washington State Legislature this year will have to be done remotely, through zoom, which means there are new rules.
When testifying over zoom, there are some special things to remember:
- Maintain proper committee protocol which includes waiting to be acknowledged by the Committee Chair before speaking.
- Testifiers may include the name of their organization in a zoom background but zoom backgrounds that include a slogan or any other material will not be permitted.
Every person’s story has the potential to impact how others think or act. Disability rights have been legislated because of individuals who spoke up and sparked change. This video introduces a strategy for telling a potent story in two or fewer minutes, using your own hand to guide the process. Think of this as a hand model for an inspirational elevator speech to improve or inspire:
- Public comment
- A meeting with public officials
- Legislative forums or candidate meetings
- Community education
The Arc of Washington State provides pathways for people to participate in legislative advocacy. The Arc serves people with intellectual and developmental disabilities of all ages and their families.
Some staff members at PAVE are certified to teach Telling your Story with a Purpose, a training created by the state’s Department of Health and Seattle Children’s Hospital. For support to create your story, fill out a PAVE Helpline request, and a trained staff member will contact you.
Questions to consider first:
- What is the challenge or problem that you, your child or your family faces? Think of a problem that also affects other people and families. Consider writing one sentence about people in general and one sentence about your own story, child, or family.
- How does this challenge affect others?
- How might this challenge affect others if nothing changes?
- What needs to change?
- What can be done to improve the situation?
- Who has the power to make a change?
Key information for your story:
- Who are you? Be sure to say your name and the district, city, or town you live in.
- If you want to include information about other people be sure you have permission before sharing anything confidential, such as names, ages, or health information.
- Clearly and simply describe the problem or challenge.
- Explain why this is important.
- Include a short story (4-5 sentences) about how this issue has affected you and your family. If possible, use a positive example – a situation where things went well and why you want others to have a similar experience.
- What do you want your listener to do? State your request in one sentence with 30 or fewer words. Avoid a general request for “support.” Provide a clear action:
- “I ask you to vote for…”
- “I want you to change this policy in order to…”
- “I want you to fund a program that…”
- Stop and check: Consider if your comments might make the listener feel criticized or attacked. Focus on the solution. Make sure you’ve included statements about how others in the community can benefit.
- End by restating your request and saying thank you. When possible, thank the listener for something they have done in the past that you appreciate–voting for a bill, serving on a committee, funding a program.
It’s true, we have been finding our way since we closed our main office since March 23rd. Each day, we are adjusting our life-work balance while many are supporting their children with their education and medical needs at home. All of our staff bring their lived experience as parents, family members, siblings, and community allies with them and it’s exactly that combination of experience and expertise that connects them with the work, our mission, and vision for the world we want to see. A community that is inclusive and values the unique abilities, cultures, voices, contributions, and potential in each of us. We can all be Hope Dealers across WA. A donation, if you can and forwarding this email to ask others to help PAVE will be appreciated! Help us make it possible “for us to support children and their families so they are not isolated or removed from their best opportunities” as stated by Mr. Davis. You can watch this short video now.
Last month, PAVE partnered with Clark County to start the Family Training Series for families and educators supporting individuals with disabilities. It is offered by the Clark County Developmental Disabilities Program, the Clark County Parent Coalition, the Vancouver, Camas, and Evergreen School Districts, PAVE, and ESD 112. While the information in the sessions are targeted for families and educators, it is valuable information for any county you find yourself in! Below is this training in Spanish.
Additional ideas and information are provided by ReadyWA.org, a coalition of state education agencies, associations, and advocacy organizations focused on student success beyond graduation. The agency provides an article: High School and Beyond Planning: What’s New for 2020-21. The article includes a section about aligning general education future planning with the IEP transition planning process and includes links to key documents in English and Spanish.
Video en español
El mes pasado, PAVE se asoció con el Condado de Clark para iniciar la Serie de Capacitaciones para familias y educadores que apoyan a las personas con discapacidades. Este entrenamiento fue ofrecido por el Programa del condado de Clark para discapacidades del desarrollo, la Coalición de Padres del Condado de Clark, los Distritos Escolares Vancouver, Camas y Evergreen, así como organizaciones como PAVE y ESD 112. ¡Aunque que la información de las sesiones está dirigidas a familias y educadores, es información valiosa para cualquier condado en el que usted se encuentre! Este video está en español para el apoyo de familias latinas.
Usted puede encontrar sugerencias e información en ReadyWA.org, que es una coalición de agencias estatales de educación, asociaciones y organizaciones que tienen como propósito ayudar a los padres de familia a defender a los derechos de sus hijos. También les ayuda a enfocarse en el éxito estudiantil que va más allá de la graduación de secundaria. Esta misma, proporciona un reportaje llamado: High School and Beyond Planning: What’s New para 2020-21. Este reportaje incluye una sección que prepara a las familias en como planificar el proceso de transición del IEP e incluye enlaces o links claves proporcionados en inglés y español.