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Plain Language Advisory Group

In 2020, the UCEDD Resource Center created a Plain Language Advisory Group. The group met to help the UCEDD Resource Center think about plain language and create plain language adaptations of resources. We want to share with the network about the importance of plain language and some lessons we learned from this work so far.



#WhatsYourPurpose2021 Youth Transition Campaign

The Institute for Disability Studies (IDS) Transition to Adulthood Programs announce a new 2021 campaign, #WhatsYourPurpose2021. Throughout the year, transition leaders including youth/young adults with and without disabilities, their family members and those that serve them will be featured in short videos and social media posts promoting transition successes and challenging others to pursue their goals. Each video and post will highlight young adults and members of their support networks sharing their future life purposes.



Planning Accessible Meetings Guide Updated

Planning Accessible Meetings and Conferences: A Suggested Checklist and Guide (PDF) is a free resource developed by the University of Maine Center for Community Inclusion and Disability Studies (ME UCEDD) in partnership with Speaking Up for Us, a Maine organization run by and for adults who live with developmental disabilities.



Bronx UCEDD Publishes Mapping of ASD Rates in Children by Language and Socio-Demographics in NY State

The Rose F Kennedy UCEDD's Research Coordinator, Ms. Katie McGrath, MSW, 'ABD' led this spatial analysis of data from the NY State Department of Education. In contrast to prior research on ASD prevalence, school districts with higher proportions of Black and Hispanic students had the highest rates of ASD.



Disability and Health Journal: The importance of seasonal influenza vaccination for people with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic

Co-authored by Georgina Peacock, A. Blythe Ryerson Ram Koppaka and John Tschida

A large proportion of Americans have at least one disability and yet people with disabilities face inequities in health and health care access. Factors associated with underlying disability and health, how they perceive and interact with the world, and where they live, or work may increase the risk people with disabilities face for illness or severe outcomes from seasonal influenza. Given the need to reduce the burden of respiratory illness on a healthcare system already overwhelmed by the COVID-19 pandemic, maximizing seasonal influenza vaccination coverage is particularly important in 2020-2021. It is critical this season to ensure equitable access to influenza vaccination for people with disabilities. Providing influenza vaccination services in the unique places where people with disabilities are living, working, or receiving care during the COVID-19 pandemic is crucial, as well as communicating effectively to people with different types of disabilities.



AUCD Professional Fellows Alumni: Innovations in Inclusion in 2020

AUCD celebrated the UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities by showcasing innovative global leadership in inclusion by our Professional Fellows alumni in Africa. AUCD Professional Fellows are disability rights advocates from Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda who have learned best practices in inclusive employment at U.S. disability rights centers via an international exchange program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. AUCD implements the Professional Fellows Program on Inclusive Disability Employment (PFP-IDE) with ICI-UMass Boston and Humanity & Inclusion.



DSP COVID19 Follow Up Survey

The Institute on Community Integration at the University of Minnesota, in partnership with the National Alliance of Direct Support Professionals, is conducting a survey on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on direct support professionals. After more than eight months since a national emergency was declared, we want to know how DSPs are doing and identify the most effective ways to protect DSPs and the people they support. Direct Support Professionals can complete the survey here. Their answers will be anonymous. National and state-specific results from the survey will be shared widely in March 2021.



INNOVATE with #PacRim2021 Call for Presentations

The Center on Disability Studies, in the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa College of Education, is accepting presentation proposals to be featured at the 36th Annual Pacific Rim International Conference on Disability and Diversity (PacRim).



Vanderbilt Kennedy Center (TN IDDRC, UCEDD, LEND) investigators to lead $5 million NSF-funded expansion of ASD workforce program

The National Science Foundation has awarded a highly competitive $5 million grant to multiple Vanderbilt Kennedy Center (TN IDDRC, UCEDD, LEND) (VKC) researchers to greatly expand a project for creating novel artificial intelligence (AI) technology and tools and platforms that train and support individuals with autism spectrum disorders in the workplace.



AUCD Launches Children's Mental Health Champions

The Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) expands its National Center on Disability in Public Health efforts with the launch of a new pilot program, Children's Mental Health Champions, made possible through a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In May 2020, six Champions were selected, representing California, Colorado, Kentucky, New Mexico, Virginia, and Washington D.C., to serve as liaisons to the CDC's Children's Mental Health program. In August 2020, the project was expanded and now supports a total of 12 Champions.



Effect of Standardized Patients on Pediatric Clinical Confidence in Audiology Students

The United States is facing a shortage of trained pediatric audiologists. Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (LEND) programs and doctor of audiology programs are striving to provide evidence-based training for pediatric audiology students through use of trained standardized patients. The purpose of the current project was to measure the effect of standardized patients on audiology students' clinical confidence when delivering difficult news in a pediatric setting.



The Power of Statistics: StatsRRTC Releases 2019 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium

On February 11, 2020, at the Holiday Inn Washington-Capitol, in Washington, DC, the Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Disability Statistics and Demographics (StatsRRTC) at the University of New Hampshire's Institute on Disability (IOD) released the 2019 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium



The Power of Statistics: StatsRRTC Releases 2019 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium

On February 11, 2020, at the Holiday Inn Washington-Capitol, in Washington, DC, the Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Disability Statistics and Demographics (StatsRRTC) at the University of New Hampshire's Institute on Disability (IOD) released the 2019 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium



Autism Acceptance Month Webinar Series

AUCD's Autism Special Interest Group (SIG) is sponsoring a series of four webinars for Autism Acceptance Month. Topics will range from parent training to reducing disparities to treating mental health issues in people with ASD. We will also sponsor a special webinar aimed at the engagement of autism stakeholders in research and service initiatives.



2020 Trainee Council Representatives Selected!

We are pleased to announce our 2020 Council Trainee Representatives. Over the past month our trainees have begun their work, and we are excited about how they will support their councils for the remainder of 2020.



Increasing Trainee Survey Responses: Best Practice Methods for Obtaining High Response Rates from Trainees

Obtaining high trainee response rates to the LEND and UCEDD 1, 5, and 10 year surveys can be difficult for programs to get. To assist Centers in potentially increasing their response rates, AUCD interviewed training directors and former trainees from the 5 UCEDDs and/or LENDs with the consistently highest response rates to understand their strategies for surveying former trainees. This report describes AUCD's interviews and the practices these Centers have found to be successful.

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