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Access Press - Minnesota's Disability Community Newspaper

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The year in review: 2017 was a year of challenges for Minnesotans with disabilities

The year in review: 2017 was a year of challenges for Minnesotans with disabilities Another year is finished, and we look back at all of the things that happened, good and bad. Access Press wishes the best for its readers in 2018. JANUARY The 2017 Minnesota Legislature gaveled into session January 3, launching one of the most potentially complex and contentious sessions in recent years. Republican House and Senate leaders and ...

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Stracke spent career as a ‘True Friend’ to many

Stracke spent career as a ‘True Friend’ to many Many happy campers have Ed Stracke to thank for their memories of summer and winter fun. Stracke stepped down January 1 as president and chief executive officer of True Friends, which provides camping and outdoor experiences for Minnesotans with disabilities. He has spent more than 33 years leading the organization. Stracke’s career with people with disabilities, ...

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‘Perfect storm’ created by new federal tax law

The new federal tax law, signed into effect just before Christmas by President Donald Trump, will have disastrous consequences for people with disabilities and the organizations that serve them. The $1.5 trillion tax overhaul is the most sweeping set of changes in decades to federal tax law. Dozens of Minnesota nonprofits, including many groups that serve ...

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Scott Adams Cartoon – January 2018

Scott Adams Cartoon – January 2018

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Accessible Events – January 2018

More events information: VSA Minnesota is here. The website has a large calendar at in the upper right hand corner of its home page. For information on galleries and theater performances around the state join the Access to Performing Arts email list at access@vsamn.org or call VSA Minnesota, 612-332-3888 or statewide 800-801-3883 (voice/TTY). To hear a weekly listing ...

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Editor’s Column – January 2018

As you all know, we’ve had a dangerously cold couple weeks. I hope everyone stayed safe and had no unforeseen incidents. Most of us who have lived here for some time know the serious risks of being caught off-guard in extreme frigid weather. Getting stuck on a snow-blocked curb cut, an un-shoveled sidewalk or slippery ...

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HISTORY NOTE: Resolve to learn more about the history of disability

Looking for a new year’s resolution for 2018? Why not resolve to learn more about the history of disability around the world? Many excellent resources are online. Here are a few: One treasure trove is the Disability History Association (DHA). From the stories of post-World War I accommodations for workers in Europe to the complicated history ...

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FROM OUR COMMUNITY: Neighbors can intervene, help isolated elders

AARP has completed a report on the Framework for Isolation in Adults over age 50. The report defines isolation as the experience of diminished social connectedness stemming from a process whereby the impact of risk factors outweighs the impact of existing protective factors. A person’s lack of social connectedness is measured by the quality, type, ...

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YOUR LETTERS ARE WELCOME

Access Press welcomes letters to the editor and commentary pieces from readers, on topics of interest to Minnesota’s disability community. Letters should be no more than 500 words, with 750 words per commentary. Ask the editors if more space is needed. Letters and guest commentaries must be signed by the authors or authors. With letters, a ...

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In Memoriam – January 2018

Education pioneers are remembered Minnesota lost two of its special education pioneers in late 2017. Both were remembered by their colleagues near year’s end. Mary Lee Enfield is remembered for her compassion for children with learning disabilities, and her tireless efforts to force changes in state education laws. Enfield died in September 2017 at age 85, after ...

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Regional News in Review – January 2018

Safety program is proposed All too easily, vulnerable adults can wander off from their homes. That can be a dangerous problem in places like Minnesota where temperatures can dip well below freezing. U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minnesota, is concerned about the number of such incidents in her state. She sees the problem as preventable with simple ...

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Radio Talking Book – January 2018

Happy New Year from Radio Talking Book! On New Year's Day and every day we wish you joy, fulfillment, and treasured moments. Best wishes for a happy 2018 from everyone at Radio Talking Book.   Weekend Program Books Your Personal World (Saturday at 1 p.m.) presents “The Power of Meaning” by Emily Esfahani Smith, followed by “Hallelujah Anyway” by ...

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January 2018 edition (pdf format)

Here's the entire edition for January 2018, in pdf format.  Please note you may need to create a log in to read and/or download this edition. Enjoy!    

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People and Places – January 2018

MNCCD announces leadership change The Minnesota Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (MNCCD) announced leadership changes at its annual meeting in December in Minneapolis. One loss that will be keenly felt is that of departing Board Chairman Randall Bachman. Bachman has stepped down from the board, after leading the consortium through a state of transition. He is the ...

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Autism added to medical cannabis program

Autism added to medical cannabis program Autism spectrum disorders and sleep apnea have been added to the list of qualifying conditions for Minnesota’s medical cannabis program. Minnesota Commissioner of Health Dr. Ed Ehlinger announced the decision November 30. The news was greeted with enthusiasm by some people with family member with autism spectrum disorder as the treatment has proven helpful in ...

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Devastating tax cuts bill nears vote

Threats to Medicaid and the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are heightened, because of the sweeping Tax Cuts and Jobs Act bills passed by the U.S. House and Senate. Senate passage of the bill December 2 followed House approval, and starts a process of reconciling the different pieces of legislation. Final floor votes are expected before ...

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History Note: New book details anniversary of special education’s start

History Note: New book details anniversary of special education’s start For many years children with disabilities were all too often denied an education in public schools. Children who weren’t institutionalized had few options. Programs in larger cities were often in the oldest buildings, with few resources. For children in rural areas special education was typically just a wish, unless a persistent parent or persevering teacher ...

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Give a newspaper subscription and help our readers in need

  Looking for a last-minute tax  deduction for 2017? Why not consider a donation to Access Press? A $30 gift can provide a one-year subscription to a reader in need. Access Press provides the in-depth news and information Minnesotans with disabilities and the elderly rely on. We cover happenings at the state capitol, at city halls, and ...

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Old lights and cords welcomed by ProAct recycling program

Old lights and cords welcomed by ProAct recycling program Opportunities lacking for people with disabilities Clear out non-working holiday lights and electrical, phone and appliance cords while creating jobs for people with disabilities. The nonprofit ProAct is kicking off its Holiday Lights Recycling effort in conjunction with several east and south Twin Cities metro cities. “Keep your lights and cords out of the trash and ...

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Editor’s Column – December 2017

One of our good friends, John Tschida, wrote me earlier this month after running into Yoshiko Dart in Washington DC, where John lives now. Yoshiko is the late Justin Dart’s wife, the woman Justin said was not only the love of his life, but also his coworker, ally, partner in advocacy and teammate. Together, they ...

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In Memoriam – December 2017

Moffatt was young advocate Jennifer Elizabeth Moffatt not only was the 2017 Miss Amazing Teen Queen for Minnesota, she also advocated for people with disabilities and emergency services in in her home community of Edina. Moffatt, 20, died on Thanksgiving. Moffatt won the title in April and represented Minnesota at the national competition. She was part of ...

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Accessible Events – December 2017

More events information: VSA Minnesota is here. The website has a large calendar at in the upper right hand corner of its home page. For information on galleries and theater performances around the state join the Access to Performing Arts email list at access@vsamn.org or call VSA Minnesota, 612-332-3888 or statewide 800-801-3883 (voice/TTY). To hear a weekly listing ...

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New anti-bullying handbook available

New anti-bullying handbook available A new resource is available for anyone concerned about bullying, especially the bullying of students with disabilities. The Minnesota Governor’s Council  on Developmental Disabilities has released The Ambassadors for Respect Anti-Bullying Handbook. The replication manual provides background information about the program and addresses the problem of bullying, including the incidence of various types of bullying, academic ...

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Radio Talking Book – December 2017

  During this holiday season, here’s to a joyful present and a well-remembered past. May the closeness of friends and the comforts of home renew your spirits. Season’s greetings from Radio Talking Book. Holiday Programming Please join us at Radio Talking Book for our Holiday Programming broadcast. This annual tradition begins at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 24, ...

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Regional News in Review – December 2017

Task force looks at abuse Abuses in Minnesota nursing homes will be scrutinized by a state task force. Gov. Mark Dayton made that announcement after the Star Tribune newspaper published a series of articles about abuse. The articles described physical and sexual abuse of nursing home residents, facilities that repeatedly violation state regulations, and even facilities ...

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