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Website Home April 19, 2012
Self advocates answering questions at a recent National Convention of The Arc
Empowering Self Advocates Across the Country!

In March, The Arc officially launched the National Council of Self Advocates of The Arc (NCSA). By joining, members will be able to network with others advocates, educate the public about the issues that are important to people with I/DD, and become active leaders in their communities.

The first national council of its kind, the NCSA will allow self-advocates to share their unique perspective and truly make an impact in their communities. To read about why you should join the Council from one of its founding members, check out our blog.

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The Arc Is Back in Montana Start Your Engines! Autism on the Rise – Act to Educate
For the first time in a decade, The Arc now has a statewide presence in Montana with the affiliation of AWARE, Inc. as a state chapter. AWARE provides homes and training for adults with developmental disabilities and services for adults and children with I/DD and other disabilities across Montana including group home living, supported independent living, supported employment and center-based employment. Also, they publish a magazine called Apostrophe for, by and about people with developmental disabilities. Read more on our blog.

The Arc is excited to announce The Arc Audi Racing Program, a new partnership providing a unique opportunity for people with I/DD to get a taste of a fast-paced professional pit crew during the 2012 Pirelli World Challenge race series.

A partnership with Istook’s Motorsports, Volkswagen Group of America and the Pirelli World Challenge series, The Arc Audi Racing Program will invite 20 individuals with I/DD and their support staff to be honorary crew members at seven races, giving them a unique experience and helping to raise awareness of The Arc and I/DD among racing fans everywhere.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) just released new data on the prevalence of autism - one in 88 children has autism or a related disorder, a 23% increase since the last report in 2009 and a 78% increase since the first report in 2007. The Arc spoke out to warn that this could be a “perfect storm,” with proposed cuts to Medicaid in Congress threatening services and supports for people with autism. Now is the time to get involved, sign up for our Action E-list, and educate your Member of Congress about this new data and autism.
An Education Funding Victory You Should Know About
The Department of Education retracted guidance it had given to local school districts concerning the “maintenance of effort” requirement in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The effort requirement was built into the law to protect students with disabilities from economic and political funding decisions. Last year, the Department advised education professionals that if districts lowered special education funding, then they could base future funding on the lowered amount. The Arc joined several organizations in asking the Department to re-think this position. Just a few weeks ago, they did just that [PDF], and The Arc is thrilled to have been a part of this victory. Learn more on our Capitol Insider blog.
Half a World Away…But So Close
When Amberley Romo, a recent graduate of American University and a former intern and brand coordinator for The Arc, moved to China, she never expected to gain such a unique insight into the challenges faced by her sister, Caroline. Caroline was born with Angelman Syndrome and has difficulty communicating. As Amberley settled into a language immersion program in Beijing, she began to see the world from Caroline’s perspective and suddenly felt closer to her sister than ever before. Read more about Amberley’s eye opening experience.
Calling All Entrepreneurs!

Are you or is someone you know the self advocate star of a micro-enterprise looking for international exposure? If so, then The Arc is looking for YOU!

Be a part of Entrepreneur Alley at The Arc and Inclusion International’s 2012 National Convention and International Forum October 25th- October 27th in Washington, DC and sell your wares to attendees from across the globe. This is a rare and wonderful opportunity to meet other self-advocates from all over the country. To reserve your spot, or if you would like more information, please contact Wendy Katz at (202) 534-3720 or katz@thearc.org.

Election Day 2012—It’s Closer than You Think!

In this time of rapid change and challenges at all levels of government, the importance of action and engagement in the political process by people with I/DD, their families, and everyone who cares about our issues has never been more important. The Arc’s “We’ve Got The Power!” campaign provides support to amplify the voice of people with disabilities in this election, and we need you!

Through partnerships with Nonprofit VOTE and SABE’s Project VOTE, The Arc is offering webinars and other materials for advocates. Learn how to assist advocates in voter registration and education, candidate education, and voter mobilization.

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