The National Council on Disability (NCD) and the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation have partnered to create the Parenting with a Disability Toolkit! NCD and the Reeve Foundation released the “toolkit” at the White House Forum on the Civil Rights of Parents with Disabilities on May 5th, 2016. The toolkit provides a summary of laws that protect families’ rights and contains information on various topics including adoption, custody, visitation, family law, and the child welfare system among others. This toolkit builds upon NCD’s 2012 report, Rocking the Cradle: Ensuring the Rights of Parents with Disabilities and Their Children. Ella Callow JD, Legal Program Director of the NIDILRR-funded National Center for Parents with Disabilities and their Families at Through the Looking Glass, participated in the development of the original report. An enhanced version of the report and the new toolkit (including a plain language version) are available at http://www.ncd.gov/publications/2012/Sep272012
The Forum on Civil Rights of Parents with Disabilities, which included the toolkit release, panels on various topics related to parenting with a disability, and the strategy session on implementing recommendations from the 2012 report, may be viewed at https://www.whitehouse.gov/photos-and-video/video/2016/05/05/forum-civil-rights-parents-disabilities or downloaded for mp4 or mp3.
About the National Council on Disability and Reeve Foundation:
The National Council on Disability (NCD) is an independent federal agency charged with advising the President, Congress, and other Federal agencies regarding policies, programs, practices, and procedures that affect people with disabilities. Originally established as a small advisory Council within the US Department of Education (under Rehabilitation Act of 1973 & amended by Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014), NCD became an independent agency in 1984 and has played a leading role in the enactment of first version of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1988 and has played in active role since the enactment of the ADA in 1990 in analyzing the needs of people with disabilities, crafting policy solutions, and being a trusted advisor to the executive and legislative branches in collaboration with people with disabilities.
The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation began from the grassroots movement by the Stifel Paralysis Research Foundation and the American Paralysis Association (APA). After his spinal cord injury in 1995, Christopher Reeve reached out to the APA for assistance and was also working on his own foundation. By 1999, the APA and Christopher’s foundation came together to form the Christopher Reeve Foundation with Dana’s name added to its moniker after her untimely death in 2006. The Reeve Foundation and its Paralysis Resource Center (PRC) provides information on living with paralysis for individuals and their caregivers, conducts research, offers supports, and provides opportunities to get involved as a peer mentor and as an advocate for change.