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Jewish Disabilities Awareness Month

Woman's head and neck in shadow/profile with bright flash/sun behind eyes and forehead

Mania can be challenging. Normally, it’s fairly easy to act properly and lawfully. But when much of your brain is malfunctioning, it can be difficult, if not impossible.

Juliette Hirt
A shorthaired Rabbi Lynne Landsberg speaking at a podium

Just a few days after the first yahrzeit of my friend and mentor, I can’t help but recall how she influenced my life and the legacy she left behind.

Kate Kaput
Hand holding a yellow suicide awareness and prevention ribbon against a wooden table background

In April 2015, when I was 15 years old, I learned that my grandfather had taken his own life after fighting with anxiety and depression for many years.

Leora Greene
Man scribbling the words Americans with Disabilities Act onto glass

I am a lawyer. I graduated Harvard law school and have practiced law for major corporations and large law firms.

Matan Koch
The author on her scooter carrying a Torah scroll

At a very young age, I absorbed the message that illness and disability were things to be ashamed of, and so I hid my troubles in shame. In short, I cheated myself.

Rabbi Ruth Adar
Disembodied arm with fist held high in the air

Rabbi Edythe Held Mencher helps us understand why the language of disability is such a powerful determinant of social attitudes, from prejudice to pride.

Aron Hirt-Manheimer
Senator Tammy Duckworth greets smiling advocates in attendance at Jewish Disability Advocacy Day in Washington DC

I am so grateful for the experience I had at JDAD 2018, and I am inspired by the unique approach the Jewish community takes to advocacy on these complex issues.

Sylvia Levy
US Capitol building against a cloudy blue sky

 

Legislation that creates waiting periods for people with disabilities to exert their rights is unacceptable.

Jonah Baskin
Smiling woman leans over two employees at laptop as if to help them with their work

It’s easy to say you want to hire someone with disabilities, but how do you go about it? For me, it’s been trial and error rooted in the philosophy that the best way to accommodate someone is to listen to what they need, and not make any assumptions.

Dana Marlowe
Closeup of a mans hand with his index finger running across a Braille page

When I was 7, my parents ordered a braille prayer book for me from the Jewish Braille Institute. When I went to the synagogue with them, I proudly carried my siddur and tried to read along – but I didn’t yet know the Hebrew braille alphabet.

Arielle Silverman

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