OCALI NOW | Issue 41 • September 2022

Graphic of young adults holding signs for Voting with headline reading: Knowing Your Voting Rights
Knowing Your Voting Rights

Knowing Your Voting Rights   

As we gear-up for Election Day on November 8, it is important for everyone to know their rights, particularly those with disabilities. One in five people in the United States have a disability, and after the pandemic, there are millions more newly disabled people who have been impacted by the virus. Voter turnout during the 2020 elections demonstrated the disability community’s desire for civic engagement, advocacy, and to have their voices heard.  

Recently, OCALI’s Family and Community Outreach director, Gwen Harshaw, sat down with Kevin Truitt, legal advocacy director at Disability Rights Ohio—a statewide, non-profit organization that fights for civil, human, and legal rights for people with disabilities across Ohio to discuss voting rights and supports available to the disability community. 

“Over the years, we’ve heard from people with disabilities who think they are not allowed to vote,” shares Truitt. “That’s simply not true and it’s important that we correct any misinformation that is out there and make sure that people know their rights.”  

One of the biggest misconceptions is that people under the care of a guardian or those in nursing homes, residential facilities, or hospitals cannot vote, which is not true. There are special processes and mechanisms in place to make it easier for people to vote. Unfortunately, most people do not know the information.  

“This is an important responsibility that we take on at Disability Rights Ohio—making sure that people know about all of the ways they can vote, what resources are available, and how they can get the support they need to ensure their voices are heard,” explains Truitt. 

The good news is that the pandemic opened up new ways and accommodations for people with disabilities to vote like never before, including early voting, same-day registration, drop boxes, mail-in voting, and more.  

Voter Registration Deadline: October 11  
For the November 8 election, the deadline to register—in-person, online, or by mail—is October 11. Learn more and register.  

For those who need assistance registering or need help completing the form, contact Disability Rights Ohio at https://www.disabilityrightsohio.org/ or 800-282-9181. The team is there to ensure questions are answered and people feel comfortable with the voting process.  

Absentee Ballots  
For those who are unable to vote in-person and would like to vote via absentee ballot, the absentee ballot application deadline is Saturday at noon before Election Day. To learn more about how to how to submit an absentee ballot, visit https://www.ohiosos.gov/elections/voters/absentee-ballot/.   

More to Come  
Watch for more information on laws to support voting rights, additional resources, etc. in a video interview coming soon. In the meantime, to learn more about the work of Disability Rights Ohio, visit https://www.disabilityrightsohio.org/ and for specific information about voting in Ohio, visit the Ohio Secretary of State website at https://www.ohiosos.gov/.   

Find What You Need at OCALICONE 2022 with image of magnifying glass over rainbow dots
Find What You Need at OCALICONLINE 2022

Find What You Need at OCALICONLINE 2022

Don’t miss your chance to attend the world’s premier autism and disabilities conference this November 15-18. Coming to a laptop, tablet, or smartphone near you! 

The event begins with a bang – an All-Star keynote session featuring Haben Girman, Judy Heumann, and Temple Grandin. Mark your calendar for 12:30, November 15 – you don’t want to miss this session!  

From there, choose from over 300 sessions presented by over 500 leaders and practitioners from across the world. Use the online Session Sorter tool to see who is presenting what, when – and build your own personalized schedule that best meets your interests and passions. And with on-demand content, your learning and discovery journey continues through December 15, 2022. 

Need continuing education or graduate credit? Check out the options and opportunities! Never attended the event? Check out our tips for first timers! 

There’s so much to experience and do at OCALICONLINE 2022. Join over 15,000 of your peers and colleagues from all 50 U.S. states and 50 countries. Registration is limited – so don’t delay! Register today. Welcome to the community. There’s a place for you here. 

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OCALI is Hiring!

OCALI is Hiring!

We are a mission-driven team committed to promoting access and inspiring change for people with disabilities and those who live with, love, and support them. Learn more about our search for a Multisystem Youth and Family Regional Coach and an Early Childhood Consultant.

Find out why we love what we do.

What’s New at OCALI

Band Together Central Ohio next to logo of four interlocking arms that end in Guitar struts with a microphone image on the right side
Band Together Central Ohio

October 9, 2-5 p.m. 
Band Together Autism Open Mic 
Join us for an Autism Open Mic to celebrate the talents of our Central Ohio Autism community. Individuals with autism are invited to participate. Registration is recommended.

PBIS Lessons Learned Part 2: Early Childhood on blue background with image of young children raising hands
InspirED: PBIS Lessons Learned, Part 2: Early Childhood

October 20, 4-4:30 p.m.
New InspirED: PBIS Lessons Learned Part 2: Early Childhood
While the features of PBIS are the same across all grades, learn how implementing PBIS looks different for what is developmentally appropriate for our youngest students in grades preschool-grade 3.

The Journey: A Free Webinar Series featuring image of youth looking at a sunset over a cityscape
The Journey: A Free Webinar Series

October 24, 2:30-3 p.m.
The Journey: Family Engagement: Building a Strong Foundation   
Learn more about identifying the conditions that impact a family’s engagement in their child’s education and what we can do to maximize their engagement.

Educational Identification of Students with ASD headline next to photo of adults discussing something at a conference
Educational Identification of Students with ASD

November 2022-March 2023
Educational Identification of Students with ASD 
This introductory training series with 10 two-hour sessions is designed for school-based evaluation teams that want to learn more about the process for educational identification of students with ASD. Register by October 24. Space is limited.

Age Appropriate Transition Assessment with logo of a flower image with colored petal
Age Appropriate Transition Assessment (AATA)

NEW: Age-Appropriate Transition Assessment Planning Guide 
Working through this process results in the team having a detailed, coordinated plan to guide all aspects of gathering transition assessment data and information. Learn more about our new guide to assist the process.

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Lending Library

Grab-n-Go Resource Gallery Kit 
This kit, available through our Lending Library, offers a variety of interventions with how-to explanations to support all learners, including those with autism spectrum disorder.