There’s lots of work that needs to be done for the disabled community,disability advocate Dorothy Hill said, but it’s up to the community to do it.
Disability Issues Legislative Roundtable: “Raise Your Voice!” brought students and members of the community together Thursday to discuss advocacy and getting involved with legislation.
Over 50 people attended the event hosted by The Coalition of Texans with Disabilities and the university’s disability studies minor, said Trevor Engel, disability studies minor assistant.
The Coalition is a disability advocacy organization based in Austin and has worked since 1978 to change public policy, according to the organization’s website..
Members of The Coalition as well as other advocates covered a variety of topics such as what advocacy’s definition is and ways to get in touch with representatives regarding legislation.
Alison Boleware Hogg Foundation for Mental Health policy fellow, has an understanding of the legislative process and advised to call ahead on office visits. It’s important to build relationships with not only the representative, but also their staff, she said.
Audience members interacted with one another throughout the event, sharing ideas and experiences of their own.
Engel said he hopes those who attended the event gained insight and now know who’s available to help.
Lindsay West, history and pre-law senior, is a disability studies minor with an interest in civil rights.
Examining the legal aspect was interesting to West, she said, because she wants to represent those who want to see change in her future career as a lawyer.