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MOVE TO INCLUDE is a partnership between WXXI and the Golisano Foundation designed to promote inclusion for people with intellectual and physical disabilities. Through programming and special events, WXXI and the Golisano Foundation look to build a more inclusive community by inspiring and motivating people to embrace different abilities and include all people in every aspect of community life. Share your thoughts with us here
Updated: 19 min 41 sec ago

WATCH: The future of special ed; the Disability Integration Act; Deaf culture through art

Thu, 05/25/2017 - 8:00pm The repeal of the Affordable Care Act could have some unintended consequences on the most vulnerable: children with disabilities. On this special Move to Include edition of Need to Know we’ll learn how special education in our public schools may see unbearable funding cuts. Also on the show, some local disability rights advocates were recently detained outside the White House. We’ll discuss what they’re calling on President Trump to do and if he’s responded. And a complex journey for a local artist unfolds on canvas. How local talent is awakening our understanding of deaf culture through art. Move to Include and the Inclusion Desk is a partnership between WXXI and the Golisano Foundation designed to promote inclusion for people with intellectual and physical disabilities.

Coming up on NTK: What happens to special education if ACA is repealed?

Tue, 05/23/2017 - 6:00am There are several unanswered questions about the repeal of the Affordable Care Act - including what it means for special education students. As the new health bill stands right now - it would cut assistance to children in special ed. We’ll break down the potential changes. Plus, you'll experience a world unfamiliar to many through the lens of deaf artists. Learn how local talent is awakening our understanding of their lives through their work.

State funds to help expand Unified Champion Schools program

Thu, 05/18/2017 - 3:53pm
Area lawmakers gathered at the Gates Chili High School field house Thursday to announce $200,000 in state funds to help expand Unified Champion Schools. That's a program that brings together students with and without intellectual disabilities through education, sports and youth leadership. It promotes inclusion through shared sport training and competition experiences. Neal Johnson is the president and CEO of Special Olympics-New York. He says this program can help battle issues like bullying and harassment. “We think that when you bring people together, with and without disabilities through something that most of us take for granted, sports, we can lead a path to friendship and inclusion and acceptance.” Johnson says this program not only involves the athletes of different abilities working together, it tries to get the entire student body involved in promoting this effort. “We want this to be a whole school involvement led by the students themselves in the school so what we’re trying

Golisano Autism Center to be built in Rochester

Tue, 05/16/2017 - 12:52pm
Several agencies are working together on a new facility to provide comprehensive services for the more than 10,000 people diagnosed with autism in the Greater Rochester and surrounding area. The Al Sigl Community of Agencies, along with the Mary Cariola Center, AutismUp and CP Rochester are collaborating on the new Golisano Autism Center to serve the greater Rochester region. The Tom Golisano Foundation announced the Paychex founder and philanthropist has provided a $2.5 million dollar challenge grant for the project, in addition to the first gift toward the challenge of $500,000. The 25,000 square foot facility will bring a wide array of coordinated services from several agencies under one roof, according to AutismUp Executive Director Sarah Milko. "Autism up focuses on the social and recreational portion of programs for individuals with autism, CP of Rochester brings speech, and occupational therapy and physical therapy, a whole different layer of pre-school. Educational services

New space for individuals with Down syndrome opens

Sun, 04/30/2017 - 12:13pm
GiGi’s Playhouse, a nationwide network of Down syndrome achievement centers is opening its 32nd location in Rochester. The concept was started in Chicago by Nancy Gianni who named the organization after her daughter who was born with Down syndrome in 2003. Chris Tumminelli is on the board for the Rochester location, and said as a father of a son with Down syndrome, spaces like these are vital. "What it will allow parents to do is congregate and get to know each other. One of the most important pieces is you really need to connect with the community and other people that have a child with Down syndrome." GiGi’s Playhouse offers a number of programs and classes for all ages, ranging from one on one education and physical fitness to preparing for the workforce and opportunities for both parents and children to socialize freely. Admission to GiGi's Playhouse is free. The space is also equipped with a gym, theater room, full kitchen and 2 classrooms. Tumminelli says similar programs are run

Local duo thrilled to be part of Boston Marathon history

Tue, 04/18/2017 - 12:14am
Dozens of people from Rochester took part in Monday’s Boston Marathon, but perhaps none were as thrilled to take part in the race as two women, Marie Boudreau-Ninkov of Brighton and Onni Peck of Fairport. Peck suffers from a progressive neuromuscular disease and she sat in a specially designed buggy pushed by Boudreau-Ninkov. The Brighton woman has run several Boston Marathons, but she says nothing compares to this experience. “It’s just an amazing experience and to do it with Onni was magical; it was so wonderful, and she had a grin on her face the whole way, and me too, actually my cheeks hurt," Boudreau-Ninkov told WXXI News. Boudreau-Ninkov says the crowds along the route were amazing in terms of their show of support. “The whole way, the whole 26.2 miles they were just screaming our names and they were cheering us, and she had a banner that said ‘team Onni,’ and they would say Tteam Onni, go Team Onni !“ The two women also became the first all-female duo team to have qualified to

Arc of Monroe County's business breakfast celebrates diversity in the workforce

Thu, 04/13/2017 - 3:16pm
The Arc of Monroe County held an annual event that celebrates people with developmental disabilities and their willingness and ability to get jobs within the community. Around 100 business leaders and hiring managers attended the event, which is designed to cultivate a diverse workforce. The Arc of Monroe's Job Path program is the region's oldest and largest training and placement service for individuals with disabilities, according to Arc CEO Barbara Wale. "It makes good business sense because our employees are great employees. They go to work every day. They work hard, and they make sure they can do the job and really want to be there for the people with whom they are working for," she said. The Arc's Job Path program helped Laquonna Mosely get a job with the West Irondequoit School District. "I feel amazing about my situation. It gives me a chance to be independent, and it gives me a chance to really just live like a person, and not be labeled," she said. Vice President of

Connections: Deaf culture in Rochester

Wed, 04/12/2017 - 7:51pm
Rochester is home to the nation's largest deaf population per capita, and throughout the years, the city has been praised for its efforts to promote accessibility and inclusivity among the deaf community. Kodak and Xerox provided jobs for deaf people, local hospitals led the way in staffing interpreters, and this year, NTID is teaming up with the University of Rochester to offer training and resources for deaf scientists. In 2006, the New York Times said, “It is here that the world of the deaf intersects the world of the hearing as in no other city.” Despite all of this, there are still misconceptions among the hearing community that impede further progress. This hour, we talk to members of the Deaf community about Deaf culture, the challenges they face, and what they hope to see for a more inclusive future. Our guests: Matthew S. Moore, president of MSM Productions, Ltd, author of For Hearing People Only , and publisher of Deaf Life Magazine Matthew J. Schwartz, ASL teacher at Rush

Disability rights activist visits Rochester to discuss ‘self-direction’

Mon, 04/10/2017 - 6:04am
One disability rights activist says that often people are too quick to assume someone with a disability can’t make their own decisions. Emily Ladau , a writer and editor in chief of the Rooted in Rights blog , visited Rochester recently to raise awareness about a different way of thinking called self-direction. “In the case of people with disabilities, there’s absolutely no reason to go in assuming that they can’t do something or that they can’t make decisions for themselves. But this happens a lot,” she said. “It happens with professionals or parents speaking over people with disabilities when they should really be leading their own lives and saying things that they think and feel.” Self-direction also happens to be the name of a New York state program geared toward individuals choosing specific services. Ladau’s message is not tied to the state program in a technical sense. “To self-direct your own life means that you are at the helm—of all the decisions that are made. There can be

Inclusive recreation is the goal of Rochester Accessible Adventures

Sat, 04/08/2017 - 11:06am
An organization in Rochester is working to establish real time access to recreation and sports for people with disabilities. Rochester Accessible Adventures is about a year old, and Executive Director Anita O’Brien says their mission is to train recreational businesses to offer their services to everyone. "I love the idea of adventure and that each person is able to choose what that means to them in life. Particularly in RAA it really is focused on recreation, active healthy lifestyle opportunities." O’Brien said inclusive recreational activities are often available as specific programs for people with disabilities, and are therefore limited to certain schedules and settings. She said as a community, more businesses should have the resources to be inclusive all of the time. "I really began thinking that there was a gap in what people were able to access on their own time. That more systemic level of how our community operates with regards to recreation." The organization trains

Helping first responders identify individuals with autism

Thu, 04/06/2017 - 12:51pm
Starting last summer, law enforcement officers across Monroe County received special training to improve their communication and interactions with individuals who are on the autism spectrum. Now, the Monroe County Association of Chiefs of Police is asking the public to help in this effort by making it easier for police to identify people who have autism. Individuals with autism and families who have a member on the autism spectrum are asked to put an autism awareness magnet on the left rear side of their vehicle. Brockport police Chief Dan Varrenti says that information is helpful for officers so they can take advantage of their training. "At the scene of the emergency, sometimes it's just inherent for police officers to be excited as well. We're human beings, just like everybody else. But to know that this may exacerbate the situation at hand is a wise reminder to the officers to slow down, make sure you enunciate properly, allow the person to process your thoughts that you're