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Season 02, Episode 01 Co-Hosts: Nadine Vogel & Norma Stanley Guest: Jane Dunhamn

Intro: [Music playing in background] Disabled Lives Matter... here we go!

Voiceover: To all our listeners, thank you for joining us and welcome to the Season 2 opening episode of the Disabled Lives Matter Podcast. Let's welcome co-hosts Nadine Vogel and Norma Stanley! Nadine Norma take it away.

Nadine Vogel: Hello everyone and welcome back to disabled lives matter yes we're a podcast, but we are more than a podcast we are a movement, and I am joined by Norma Stanley my partner in crime my co host hey norma.

NORMA STANLEY: Hi. i'm so glad to be back Happy New Year everybody.

Nadine Vogel: Yeah, Happy New Year, so we are just delighted to be back with everyone, and especially because of today's guest so Jane Dunhamn Jene is one amazing lady.

Nadine Vogel: You are all going to hear about this on her her work in disability spans 50 years she started when she was two just so everyone knows.

Nadine Vogel: and her work is primarily focused on the intersections of race and disability.

Nadine Vogel: Among, among other things, and and probably one of the most wonderful things that I know about her is that she is the founding Member and director of the National Black Disability Coalition and NBDC so Jane welcome.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Thank you for having me.

Nadine Vogel: Absolutely I you know there's so many things I want to ask you about that i'm like oh my gosh where should we start where should we go so let's let's start with the fact that, like norma like myself, that you are a special needs mom do you want to tell us a little bit about that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Absolutely um.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: If it's okay with you.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: i'm going to change language when it's comfortable for me and i've never used the word special needs.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: You know, those, those of us who were in the trenches doing Disability Advocacy know that special isn't quite so special.

Nadine Vogel: I agree.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So, they took that out, and I have been working advocating for years for school districts to change that language.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: The same way.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Um, folks with intellectual disabilities.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: got to start using its. um.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: mental retardation I really think we should change that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So anyway.

Nadine Vogel: So Jane i'll just comment on that because.

Nadine Vogel: that's The biggest challenge is that this.

Nadine Vogel: is legally.

Nadine Vogel: Legally.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Yes.

Nadine Vogel: Means that terminology for IEPs individualized education plans and so forth, and so it actually makes it very difficult not to use that language in many instances, especially when we're talking about younger children.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And you know I, I find it to be very interesting that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: It's such a struggle with school districts and yet we were able to get mental retardation taken out of the medical profession and and the.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: The diagnosis and so in this huge entity around our health is able to hear us and to change that language, but our schools, which is supposed to be our basis of education we can't get them so.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: where'd that scares me in terms of overall discrimination.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: If that's what the attitude is.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: What are our schools teaching our children across the board.

Nadine Vogel: Absolutely.

NORMA STANLEY: It's a scary thought for sure.

Nadine Vogel: yeah yeah.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So anyway, you did ask me how did I get involved um.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Like the two of you, when my daughter was born.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And was diagnosed I actively became involved.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Um. I wasn't I didn't approach it with with fear from newness I was very, very thankful that I grew up in a church where.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Our priest sister Julia Carter.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Was paralyzed from the chest down she fell down when she was in college at Morgan state in Maryland, and so I was nine and 10 and we saw Julia with these last deal braces and crutches and she had a car that had hand controls and she was the accountant from for.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Nadine help me what's what's the to be searched place where.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Yes, she was the accountant for Kessler for years and years, that's where she retired from so as a kid I got to see this woman who had significant impairment, this still went to work every day to drove her car and then my priests nephew.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: had an intellectual disability.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And and and how he was included so now we're going back 60 years, and these are the images that I saw and then of course the other person they attended the church with you all might know about was Deirdre Davis.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And you know she wasn't actually passed, about a year or so ago, and she was from New Jersey.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And Deirdre was a wheelchair user became an attorney worked in Washington and so and I knew the family, the family.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Were family, friends, so I grew up as a young child seeing people with various impairments included in it in our lives and in our in our faith life, so that when you know my daughter was given the diagnosis, it was okay well let's just move forward.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And so, coupled with what I began to learn about disability and what I had grown up, and you know as a child of the 60s or 50s and the 60s.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Around race, I was able to begin to put those two together and that's where my advocacy really began first it began with disability in general.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Right and then, as the years went on, and looking at the disparities when it came to race and it took me i've only been doing actively the race piece, for the last 20-25 years because my goal was to get my daughter, where she needed to be in life.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And so that was my first priority.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And after she you know was on her own.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I began to really do the advocacy around race and disability.

NORMA STANLEY: It's so weird life is so you know you just never know Deirdra Davis is actually the sister of a friend of mine who lives here in Atlanta, and the aunt of another friend who was actually another good friend of my service amazing small world.

NORMA STANLEY: yeah yeah.

NORMA STANLEY: Yeah yeah is she was a power powerhouse in the White House and the things that she did.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: If you hadn't known her grandmother.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Were D got her feistiness from.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: The entire family was quite amazing yeah.

NORMA STANLEY: yeah.

Nadine Vogel: Well let's let's do this and let's let's just fast forward, because I have so many questions, and I know our listeners to about NBDC.

Nadine Vogel: Tell us you know what that is what the mission is how how how things are delivered I may interrupt you a few times and Norma just because we're so excited and fire out more questions for everything you say about that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Sure um NBDC is a grassroots Community I mean Community across the United States, not a local communities of black disabled people and family members.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: We do advocacy but the advocacy is really in helping one another, and so I get the information through our website.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I don't do quite so much training, but i've done training around race and disability to organizations.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So pretty much wherever the need is um.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: We do through our website, the identity piece, but that takes second seat to giving people information that's going to improve the quality of their lives.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And that's what i'm most focused on how do we improve the quality of life for a black disabled person and or their family members, what is it that they need to know.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Life does not need to be hard because disability is in your life and so that was my my goal in establishing NBDC.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And for a long time, I worked really within the identity piece, and I realized that I wasn't getting to people what they needed as far as it everyday life and what's important in their everyday lives.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So that that's pretty much, much it, you know we've done legislative work.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: We were able to get a bill passed in New Jersey that had an agency do an annual evaluation of how services were rendered to people of color in the state.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And that has been replicated in other states.

NORMA STANLEY: I was going to ask you i'm sorry to interrupt but why did you feel the need to do.

NORMA STANLEY: That, because that is a question that you know.

NORMA STANLEY: Why do people want, why do we separate that there was obviously a need.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Oh, oh yeah I don't see it as a separation, I see it as a coming together and then examining because services were not delivered equitably.

NORMA STANLEY: hmm.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So for me.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: The ableism and racism or part of the same package when it comes to people of color with disabilities, we can't separate out the racism that exists.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And racism exists in disability, the same way, it is in other parts of our culture in the United States and our policies and so that that needed to be looked at and every time I spoke to a family of color well.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: i'll tell you I had a mom in Newark tell me, she was advocating for a young woman who was a single mom who had cerebral palsy.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And I just recently heard about the movie King David I don't know if you're familiar with it, but then the tennis star is dead.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And it's a scene and we're a social worker comes to the House, and this is the same thing that happens over and over again, a social worker came to this young woman's house.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: To do an assessment and she went in her refrigerator she just went over boundaries.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And that woman who was advocating for her is.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: As a mom also now has an adopted with disabilities said.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I don't believe they would go into a white family's house and go in the refrigerator and the behavior that was there, so it's really clear very, very clear that the differences, and I even before I got into.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: The advocacy and looking at the policy.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Just a different sense of I experienced and having my daughter and and what that looked like, especially from first in the beginning with the medical profession and what the delivery and what that outcome was for me.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And so, because of that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: it's important that we look at race and when you think about it, why shouldn't disability have that component to it, we have an agency that looks at the difference in race for for healthcare.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So if we have an agency that looks at race and healthcare, the office of minority health if we have HUD it looks at housing and urban development, why wouldn't we look at race within disability.

Nadine Vogel: So let me ask you Jane what was the outcome of that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Which one.

Nadine Vogel: Of the city, looking at the disparities in New Jersey.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I don't I don't know because I was in state government at that time.

Nadine Vogel: Okay.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And I retired and then I was busy with NBDC and forming NBDC I have kept tabs and they have not been as.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: um.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: How can I be kind. No I try to be as kind of as I can as um fruitful as I should be and, following that but, again, this is where the advocacy piece comes in.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: This is where the racism comes in.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: The advocacy being it is black disabled people and family members that must make sure that these laws are upheld if they don't people ignore those laws.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: This is where the the racism come in, because, unfortunately, I will say all but many disability agencies are not necessarily geared towards the hard work of looking at race and what is happening around services for people.

Nadine Vogel: Well they're not they're not always ready to do the hard work that they're funded to do in the first place.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Exactly .

Nadine Vogel: Even beyond race, you know I I can remember it, you know my daughter now is 30-31, I think, and I can remember you know, taking her to agencies in New Jersey.

Nadine Vogel: And because she didn't fit their mold and she had skills that perhaps they weren't used to if we really can't help it like you, are the you are get more funding than any other agency and you're right but, but if you don't fit.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Whether it's race or anything else, what we found is, if you don't fit.

Nadine Vogel: nicely into their little you know box, how they define what they think they are there to do.

Nadine Vogel: You don't you don't get it, and I, and I think race just adds to that you know at my company in springboard we have a whole practice or an intersectionality and we have an event around it and we were talking at our event last fall around intersectionality relative to police brutality.

Nadine Vogel: And that you know people who are disabled are are subject to police brutality in many ways, just as much as the black and brown community and we had individuals there from the police for from other places that said, well, I am black and disable can you only imagine.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Exactly you know what if i'm sorry I didn't mean to interrupt you, but we were saying when we really we those of us from across the country.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Who do have been doing this advocacy work when we started what we would say was I remember, I was at a conference in California.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: This is at least 35-40 years ago and I said when I walked through the door I can't separate being black as separating being a mom of a disabled child my daughter will not be able to separate what her experiences as being a black person and what her experiences.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: We bring all of who we are to that table.

NORMA STANLEY. Exactly.

Nadine Vogel: And we need to learn.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And, and it was then that we began to get some traction, not just because what I said, but all of us were saying the same thing that we can't separate out, who we are.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: To look at all of who we are.

Nadine Vogel: Absolutely, well, we are just at a point where we need to go on break I have.

Nadine Vogel: 15 minutes has just flown so let's do that let's take a short break for our listeners don't go anywhere, we will be right back.

Nadine Vogel: And what i'd love to do Jane is when we come back let's talk a little more let's go a little deeper into NBDC and what your core initiatives or and and how that's playing out that okay.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: that's fine Thank you.

Nadine Vogel: Alright, see you all in a minute.

Voiceover: And now it's time for a commercial break.

[COMMERCIAL] Have you attended a springboard Consulting event? Well, you should, we have the best events and our 2022 events are just under way. Firstly is the Brg Summit happening on Tuesday, April 26th, and then following that is Disability Matters. North America Conference and Awards that's happening Wednesday and Thursday, April, 27 and 28. Both events are being delivered by a live stream. If interested in attending, please visit www.consultspringboard.com for more information.

Voiceover: And now back to our show.

Nadine Vogel: Hello everyone welcome back to the second half of today's episode of disabled lives matter Norma Stanley my co-host and I are interviewing the lovely Jane Dunhamn.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Hello. [laughter.]

NORMA STANLEY: [laughter.]

Nadine Vogel: And um before we went on break.

Nadine Vogel: We said that when we came back Jane we want to hear a little bit more about NBDC.

Nadine Vogel: You know, initially, I think, right now, you have like I know you did a lot that you do, but I think there's like two core programs or initiatives that you're focused on right now wonder if you could share a little bit about that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: yeah, these are the two programs that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Have financial backing and I just want to take this opportunity to thank those for money comes from contrai contributions and people have just been so generous any because of that generosity, we were able to start our um.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: our um.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: program or scholarship program last year was the first and we had fordham for awardees and we're hoping, you know it share that we can at least have, for, if not more, and grow from there, the reason that it's important is because.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: We want to get.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: As many children with an educa a college education as possible.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: People children who want to do this because i'm not a proponent that everybody should go to college I think people need to decide who and what they are and what they want to do, but the.

Nadine Vogel: People who are not.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: yeah for those who want to go to school, we want to provide that opportunity we want to help be part of that financial support.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Primarily because it cost twice as much for disabled person to go to college, I learned that from from my daughter's experience in that although she had services for personal assistance.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: It wasn't enough to care to cover the cost of.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: The full time because my daughter has quadriplegic so she needed 24 seven living away from home so on top parents with non disabled kids were in college and talk about the expense, I say everyone add $40,000 a year to pay for some.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Assistance and so because of that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: type of expenses not everybody's expenses like that, but it is, it can be anywhere from 10 to $50,000 more.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: per year for a student with a disability to attend college, depending on their needs and families can afford that and then you look at families who are poor and they're poor from from from racism and the lack of opportunities.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: It was just really important that we were able to use that money that was donated to us to give back and establish that Program.

Nadine Vogel: So before we move on to to the other program should someone want to donate to that program or should we have a listener, who wants to go to college, who has a disability, how do they reach out to you guys about that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: What they can do is go to blackdisability.org all one word blackdisability.org and the donation is there on the website, as well as the application for the scholarship program okay.

Nadine Vogel: Great Thank you so your other your other big program that that you're being funded for now is, I believe, to have an attorney on staff.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Yes.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: You got me just clarify we're working on funding for that particular program that that's what we're working towards.

Nadine Vogel: Why do you need an attorney.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Because we get so many phone calls or emails.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: about people who need some direction disabled people who are homeless, the people who are unable to get services.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: From vocational rehabilitation services it's across the board it's a myriad.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: of issues that people encounter as you also have mentioned that there's the incarceration piece the justice, piece of things that come up where people have been unduly harassed by the police, because of disability, so that is something that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: it's real important that even if NBDC can afford to pay an attorney to take on individual cases, having an attorney who will hear the issue, who can direct families, yes, you do have a real legal case, and this is where you need to go or to have that roster.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: would be really helpful to have that person that's on board that folks can get in touch with and have a consult what is the issue and have that open attorney really give them the advice.

Nadine Vogel: mm hmm yeah you know it's it's a shame that.

Nadine Vogel: it's a shame there's such a need for that.

NORMA STANLEY: Exactly.

Nadine Vogel: I mean Norma when I hear about that you know, again we have adult children with disabilities and you know.

Nadine Vogel: I can think over the years of different issues that that we've had or maybe that you had, but you have the means to get what you need but think of all the people out there that don't.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Yeah.

NORMA STANLEY: Absolutely.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And just and just from the medical profession, and I am going to share a very personal story because it's the beginning.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: When my daughter was born.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: There was an issue with the doctor.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: and

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Two things that were really important, without going through all the steps of what happened during that delivery in the medical piece.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: But I think it was a couple of weeks, maybe two weeks after my daughter was born, it was a notice in the paper that she and her husband had bossier license in New Jersey, because of selling drugs out of their their um their office.

NORMA STANLEY: Wow.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And so um I had friends that worked in the hospital where my daughter was born and it's a Jane you really need to to look into this.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I was young.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: The doctor told me that my daughter probably would be live to be three or four if I was lucky I wasn't thinking in terms of legalities I was thinking in terms of keeping my baby alive.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And so, these sort of things happen over and over again so from the health care and doctors and what happens.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And let me just go back because it's important to me that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: When I went to get.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: my daughter registered they didn't have a record of her birth, I had to go to the hospital to get a record for birth to take to City Hall, to make sure that she was registered, and when I got I was mistakenly given documentation and what it said was on her the medical.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: chart with living child with a question mark.

NORMA STANLEY: Wow.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So it was all kinds of stuff that happened.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: In that hospital and that was the very beginning of my journey as a single parent with a child, with a disability.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So you look at that medical stuff that happens to us and how we're in danger, and how our children or our loved ones are in danger, and then you look at at the.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: justice system and what happens with people with disabilities and then you look at service delivery, the need is across the board.

NORMA STANLEY: Today, with the situation where people who are just you know black mothers who are having more of their children die, and all the mothers are dying.

NORMA STANLEY: In general, there is something going on in terms of the care and that needs to be looked at.

NORMA STANLEY: Because there are more.

NORMA STANLEY: incidences of those things happening.

Nadine Vogel: yeah.

Nadine Vogel: No. Absolutely.

Nadine Vogel: Well, as we're on this topic of care and health care and medical care, I think, normal you and I would be remiss not to ask Jane about Covid.

Nadine Vogel: And the any impact, but you know Jane what I want to know is the impact of covert if there has been an impact on you on your daughter it on the families you serve what has your experience been.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Um Covide has been devastating for the disability Community um did you see the the.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: interview that the with the CDC director said that's been a hot topic, the last couple of days.

NORMA STANLEY: Yes.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I don't know Okay, so that you know that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: People that had these coexisting. um.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: issues where the folks who died from from from Covid and so, not just the folks who had died, but the other thing that hasn't been talked about.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Except for advocates and they have not been able to if they even the historical or disability organization had not been able to get that across to to government agencies that people with disabilities are hit hard because of the vulnerability because of.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: immune systems already being compromised, and so it hit our household too because of.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: The first vaccine that my daughter got back last March, the very next day she woke up and she couldn't see she had vision issues and it took us about.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: A month and a half, maybe two months before we're able to get to the bottom of it, and she has a myasthenia gravis, which is an auto immune.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: disability and so in the beginning it was okay well there's not enough scientific proof.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: To say that but, as time has gone on, yes, they have been able to make that connection, and as of I think recently this only been maybe three people in the country that had a connection between the vaccine and myasthenia gravis.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: One of the things that I guess wanted to get out to people what we have done Oh, let me just back up.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: and make connect the dots with this my daughter had to retire from her her job she worked for the US Department of Labor here in Washington for 24 years but.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: With with her other impairments, and now with this, because she is in pain and even though she can see she cannot look at a screen and be at TV computer screen.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: More than maybe 15-20 minutes and then she has to put the blindfold on so it it just we're hoping that she can go into remission but it hasn't happened yet so she has retired from that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: But one of the things that I want people to know is that anybody who has had.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: A condition as a result of the vaccine, that there is an agency and it's called Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program and it's under HRsa.gov/cicp, so they really should.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Go to the website, because they asked if you had any sort of.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Other condition as a result of the vaccine and and that's important for people to do.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And so you say from the people that we know people were calling in as my daughter talked to her friends and her friends are community of people with disabilities oh yeah one of her friends.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Had a mini stroke, she was able to come back from it.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And then, as as much as when I came to my daughter's I was renting a car, and I was at the car rental place and talking about why I was here, and the man said.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I wouldn't tell anyone i'm not really part of the disability community, he says, but I have.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Diabetes and I had a reaction to the vaccine, so no matter where I went I was hearing these stories that people that have other impairments had had had a serious reaction from the vaccine, and so I was really glad to hear.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I read an article.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: That the advocate advocacy agency, the larger ones, wrote in response to the CDC CDC directors.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: disrespectful comment around people with disabilities and Covid dying.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: that they will be looking at these issues because it's both issues are equally important, the fact that people died and what does that look like, because one of the things that I learned that I had medical people that I asked was that when studies are being done.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And trials being done for for for for the medicine and new vaccines, they don't use people with disability.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: They use the strongest and healthiest.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: People as subjects.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And so, that means they don't know how other folks are going to respond to it and i'm surely not in a position to say how that should work.

Nadine Vogel: Right.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: But but that's something that needs to be looked at, and I also just want to clarify I would never say to anyone not to get the vaccine, even though it had devastating effect for my daughter too many people in this country have died, however.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: If people get a vaccine and they have a reaction a life altering reaction, I do believe the government does have some responsibility.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: yeah I feel as if they.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Take they've taken it for the great the greater good, they take they take the hit for the greater good this important that people get the vaccine, but if there is an issue that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: There should be some sort of compensation for people's having a life altering experience.

Nadine Vogel: yeah you know, in my experience and Norma, I don't know about you, but I have found that when someone with a disability.

Nadine Vogel: In this situation, Covid gets a vaccine has a reaction gets into a car accident gets her that the the general rule of thumb is we blame it on the original disability.

NORMA STANLEY: Yes.

Nadine Vogel: And it has nothing to do with that you were you know rear ended with your car nothing to do with you took this vaccine that we know you don't know a lot about and again i'm a proponent of the vaccine.

Nadine Vogel: and getting boosted, and all that, like you, Jane so, I agree, but I think is a bigger issue a play that I think you touched on, which is just that.

Nadine Vogel: Again, it goes back to the discrimination, the health disparities around people with disabilities in terms of no matter what happens oh it's not our fault, they were disabled before I must have been that it's not this it's because of their disability is just coming out now after 30.

Nadine Vogel: Things lLike that it's very frustrating.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: yeah and really it's because of the impairment, because I look at disability, people are on disabled because of ableism because of the discrimination so it's the actual impairments that people have the body mind differences that they keep going back to I mean we're we're mom so.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I don't know if you've experienced, but by the time I do it, it was 10 years old, you know us she still gets gets hers falls down or get sick and and nothing to do with the cerebral palsy.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And every time we went to a hospital the intake was tell me about your delivery it's like she has pneumonia, why are we talking about my delivery 10 years ago.

Nadine Vogel: yeah oh my God that is so true.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And I hear that from adult people with disabilities.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: That whenever they are in a medical situation they have to be firm and this is why i'm here, and you know you're crossing boundaries you're going into personal matters that has nothing to do with where I am i'm here today.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: So there's still a lot of.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: work to be done.

Nadine Vogel: Right or you know that my my pet peeve that Norma's heard me talk about this that you know i'll accompany my daughter let's say to a doctor to a hospital or something.

Nadine Vogel: And you know she she drove there she's communicating with them she's college educated and they look at me and say so mom you know and then i'm like one i'm not your mom and to why you're talking to me i'm just like hearing it like it, it just makes me crazy.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: yeah yeah yeah.

Nadine Vogel: It makes me crazy. Well, unfortunately what's making me crazier is that we are out of time. Oh my God.

NORMA STANLEY: I know. Great conversation.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Thank you for inviting me and it was a pleasure.

Nadine Vogel: This was delightful just delightful and, and so the work you're doing Jane is so incredibly important, and I just hope we have ways to talk with you more and.

NORMA STANLEY: Yes.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: If I have a minute just to add one is the conversation we need to get to, but I wanted to talk just a little bit about impairmentISM and I won't go into it, because we're at a time, but when.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: We as a disability community must come together we must come together we are so separate by separated by a medical diagnosis.

Nadine Vogel: Absolutely.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And so.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: i've come up with impairmentism I know what used in the academic field but different people use a different ways.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And it's been very frustrating for me for people that I care about.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: who have disabilities don't have intellectual disabilities get so insulted if someone thinks they have an intellectual disability and it's like why.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: It you know if you think that's such a big thing, what do you what are you thinking about people's intellectual disability their your brothers and your sisters too why are you fighting to prove to the world how smart, you are.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: If you are, you are, and if somebody doesn't think that, why are you so offended.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: That means does your brothers and sisters with intellectual disabilities, need to be offended, we need to come together and stop trying to say well there's a hierarchy here, and this person's impairment, it makes me.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: More or less than who I am.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And I really would like to see an end to that I looked at colorism and colorism is a prejudice or discrimination against indigenous with a dark skin tone typically among people have the same ethnic or racial group.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And impairmentism is the same thing I coined it as prejudice or discrimination against individual with intellectual disabilities from disabled people.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And the need by disabled people to convince others that they do not have an intellectual impairment and so that's something that I really want to talk about and and really come together, especially because academics really set the tone for disability studies and yet.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I just don't find that there is enough of coming together.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Around, including people with intellectual intellectual disabilities as a family of disability.

Nadine Vogel: So it's interesting that you say that, though I mean, I agree with you 500% whether it's colorism it's ableism, you know impairment isn't any of those isms I me.

Nadine Vogel: yeah yeah.

Nadine Vogel: Right.

NORMA STANLEY: There's too many isms.

Nadine Vogel: Exactly if you could remove all the isms would be good. um I do think, though, and this is just from my experience in working with corporations.

Nadine Vogel: And the employment of people with disabilities, I do see one of the reasons I don't say right or wrong, but I see it as one of the reasons this occurs with the disability Community around cognitive disabilities.

Nadine Vogel: Is that companies tend to lump everyone together and they'll say Oh well, this position requires you know someone with a college degree or this position requires you have a disability well obviously you couldn't do that, and so this.

Nadine Vogel: There are assumptions that are made about people with disabilities, that if you have a disability and must also impact your cognitive ability and therefore.

Nadine Vogel: You wouldn't be eligible for this position, so I do think that there's an issue there and we we do a lot of Springboard where we training companies and training executives, so that they don't think that way because it when they do it contributes to exactly what you were just talking about.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Well yeah I think that's from a policy perspective.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: But i'm looking at.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Individuals who really are accomplished individuals who get highly offended then when when someone thinks that they have intellectual impairment and it's like let.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: It go they've already been people already established them and they're sitting where they need to be sitting.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: But

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: If someone comes up I've sat with someone doing an event, and it was an event for people with disabilities and he was from out of state and other people with disabilities, because of the speech impairment thought that he had an intellectual disability.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Those are his brothers and sisters, why are you so annoyed by this.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And so i'm saying more from a person to person people to people.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: We need to start making these hierarchies ourselves.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: that's.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: that's where I sit with that.

Nadine Vogel: I agree.

Nadine Vogel: When I when I hear stuff like that i'm like you know I get over it get over yourself.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: yeah.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: yeah.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: yeah but.

NORMA STANLEY: It comes downs to everybody being their.

NORMA STANLEY: authentic self.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I know, but.

NORMA STANLEY: And a lot of people don't know how to do that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Yeah and and it's a little bit it's a lot more complicated than that, but I think, as long as we talk about it, because if that's if that's the case it's like Okay, we get to me saying and.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And the Jim crow South why don't you get over yourself.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Yeah it's a little bit more embedded than that and we.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Just need to be aware of who we are and and and where we see people in the world yeah.

Nadine Vogel: Jane what what can we do to help move that along, because I do think it's important.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: I think we can can begin to talk about it amongst ourselves in our Community.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: there's a lot of talk that we need to do that, amongst ourselves and amongst our families, so the talk that adult people with disabilities have and who we talk among ourselves as one conversation then there's the conversation of.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Families, we as family members can advocate.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: For for our kids we can do over the health care, but when we sit with family members who treat our children less than the other kids in the family, those conferences conversations go silent, because if you're too vocal about it there, she goes again.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: And it's actually you with the rest of your family, so we need to talk around ourselves as people with disabilities and then we need to talk around our families and it's really, really hard, but we have to have conversations, aside from policy.

Nadine Vogel: Compensation was family conversations, they are, we can have a whole discussion just on that topic.

Nadine Vogel: And maybe we'll come back and do that.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Okay.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: Well i'm sorry to take more time, but thanks so much.

Nadine Vogel: Again, thank you so much, and thank you for everything that you do.

NORMA STANLEY: Yes.

Nadine Vogel: Okay bye.

Jane Dunhamn, NBDC: bye.

Norma Stanley: Have a blessed one.

Closing comment: [Music playing in background.] Thank you for listening to this week's episode of disabled lives matter. We look forward to seeing you next Thursday. Have a great week!

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55 episodes