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120 Arrested in ADAPT confrontation with AFSCME

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Traveling_Home Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-12-07 10:16 PM
Original message
120 Arrested in ADAPT confrontation with AFSCME
For Immediate release

September 12, 2007



For Information contact:

Bruce Darling 585-370-6690

Marsha Katz 406-544-9504

Gary Arnold 773-425-2536

www.adapt.org

Over 120 Arrested When ADAPT Refuses to Sign Statement Supporting Institutions

Chicago--- Today ADAPT confronted Council 31 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) on their support of reopening the state's Lincoln Developmental Center institution, and AFSCME's refusal to endorse any legislation supporting home and community-based services for people with disabilities. AFSCME responded by asking ADAPT to sign a statement supporting institutions authored by AFSCME director Henry Bayer, and when that didn't happen, Bayer had over 120 people arrested for blocking the doors, elevators and parking lot of the AFSCME building.

It's impossible to negotiate human and civil rights issues with people whose only concern is their own pockets -no matter how many people are warehoused and deprived of their liberty as a result, said Mike Oxford, Kansas ADAPT Organizer. They typed up a statement supporting institutions and asking for money, and then couldn't understand why we didn't want to sign it.


ADAPT has met repeatedly with AFSCME leadership, receiving a commitment from Gerald McEntee, the union's president, to sign on to legislation that supports home and community-based services and supports for people with disabilities and the elderly. That promise was never kept, and was one of the reasons ADAPT visited the Council 31 offices.


For an organization that has its roots in the civil rights movement, their treatment of people with disabilities is even more despicable, said Randy Alexander, Memphis ADAPT Organizer. The union and its members make a lot of money by advocating to keep people with disabilities and older folks stuck in nursing homes and other institutions instead of being able to live in their own homes like other people. It's unconscionable that the union fights for workers' rights at the expense of our rights. In ADAPT, we know that you can't have one without the other.


The arrests at AFSCME concluded the week of ADAPT action in Chicago. The week began with a national Affordable, Accessible, Integrated Housing Forum, attended by federal officials who heard testimony from people with disabilities about the lack of adequate housing, and the discrimination they have experienced when trying to secure housing. The forum was followed by three days of action on the streets that included gaining a commitment from Governor Blagojevich for permanent closure of the Lincoln Developmental Center, and assuring ADAPT a seat at the table as Illinois enacts its Money Follow the Person demonstration. The next ADAPT action will be in Washington, D.C. April 26-May 2, 2008 when ADAPT celebrates its 25th anniversary.
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pop goes the weasel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-12-07 11:15 PM
Response to Original message
1. wow
I find AFSCME's position unconscionable.

But on the bright side, looks like ADAPT made some gains with Blagojevich.
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Traveling_Home Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-13-07 12:23 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. Waiting for the pictures

There are usually great pictures that come with the protests. I try to post the link on Thursday.

I too am very disappointed in AFSCME. I had also heard about union problems related to deinstitutionalizing Laguna Honda in San Francisco so I think this is not a new problem. It is hard to get a handle on the confrontation that occurred. It shouldn't be necessary. I look forward to trying to better understand AFSCME's position when I learn more from the folks coming back to Denver.
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pop goes the weasel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-13-07 12:34 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. I look forward to your update
and the pictures!
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KamaAina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-13-07 09:35 PM
Response to Original message
4. Local news coverage buried fairly deeply
and wriiten by the Sun-Times' health reporter! :wtf:

http://www.suntimes.com/lifestyles/health/555364,CST-NW...

On Wednesday, protesters in wheelchairs blocked elevators and doors at 29 N. Wacker, where Council 31 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees is located.

Chicago Police issued 110 citations for failure to disperse, based on complaints from building managers, said Police Department spokeswoman Monique Bond.


All we get out of this is a five-paragraph blurb by the health reporter. Criminetly.
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pop goes the weasel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-13-07 11:30 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. not surprising
The larger community is possessed of a cure mentality that views all aspects of the life of people with disabilities through a medical lens.
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