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Calls to Action

Presidential Forum to Focus on Disability Issues

COLUMBUS, OH (September 11, 2012) -- A coalition of over 50 disability organizations, including Autism Speaks, is hosting a non-partisan September 28 National Forum on Disability Issues where the Democratic and Republican presidential candidates will have the opportunity to present their positions on disability issues and the public will be able to respond through a webcast.

Both the Romney and Obama campaigns have acknowledged the event; the level of their participation will be detailed closer to the event. 

“The National Forum on Disability Issues, the only national Presidential event to focus on issues specific to the disability community, is a great opportunity for both President Obama and Governor Romney to make their stances on disability issues clear," said Sue Hetrick, director of public policy/The Ability Center and coordinator of the Ohio Disability Vote Coalition. "Over 14.7 million Americans with disabilities voted in the 2008 election. With 1 out of every 5 Americans living with a disability today, their voices and their votes will play a critical role in the 2012 election.”

The forum is making available 30-minute timeslots (between 12:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. EST) for each presidential candidate, or their representative, to present their vision on disability policy in America for the next four years. Each candidate has been invited through their campaigns to address issues such as employment, health care, long-term community-based support and services, education, transportation, housing, and research.

Following their remarks, a moderator will present questions submitted from the disabilities community. In addition to the presidential campaign, the event will address Ohio's U.S. Senate campaign between incumbent Democrat Sherrod Brown and his Republican challenger, state Treasurer Josh Mandel.

To register for the webcast, go here.

To learn more about the event, visit the NFDI website here.

The event is being held in Columbus at the Hyatt Regency at 350 North High Street. To attend in person, go here. Space is limited to 500 participants.