Everywhere that nonspeakers spell they have been communicating the need for change, about ending exclusion, about their desire to be included. Parents in waiting rooms have been chatting about it too, what life could be like for their child, for their family. Practitioners and clinicians have sat across from each other at large tables talking about change, change that could empower their clients, could help the world know the intelligence, wit, love, power, and compassion of nonspeaking people.
We have been talking about the need for change as a community of spellers, of loved ones, of allies, and of practitioners. One of the 4 focuses of I-ASC’s mission is advocacy to represent this need for change. The other focuses are training, research and education. When I-ASC was formed, a place to bring people who were talking about change together was formed.
I-ASC believes strongly in solidarity. “Nothing for us without us,” this anthem, of so many disability rights movements, is a guiding value of our organization. For this reason, I-ASC sought to bring people together who use spelling as their primary mode of communication to envision, create and develop advocacy at I-ASC. Social change has been rumbling, especially amongst youth. Annually we see the power of young voices in social movements. Youth are also the educators, practitioners, therapists, business people, and politicians of the future. With this in mind, we wanted to invite young allies to join our advocacy efforts so that they could learn and support this change. It is the willingness, dedication, and hardwork of these spellers and allies by which we share the Spellers & Allies Advocacy Network with you.
We want to thank the Hirsch Academy for hosting this incredible conference and for all the dedicated people who put time, energy, stress, and love into making it happen. We were honored to have an opportunity to be a part of such a wonderful conference and share our initiatives. If you were not able to attend the conference please enjoy the presentation video.
Thoughts and Words from The Spellers & Allies Advocacy Network. Spellers & Allies is a group of spellers and allies between the ages of 18- 30 who advocate together around issues that concern nonspeaking people, such as agency, autonomy, and access.