Group of Advocates

The Tennessee Disability Coalition is an alliance of organizations and individuals joined to promote the full and equal participation of people...

Rep Jernigan and Louise McKown

The Tennessee Disability Coalition is an alliance of organizations and individuals joined to promote the full and equal participation of people...

Advocates in front of the capitol building

The central purpose of the Coalition is to advocate for public policies that promote equal opportunity, economic self-sufficiency, and independent...

Disability Day on the Hill Announcement

"When dozens or even hundreds of people gather for a common cause, those who create our laws have no choice but to...

Katie Beckett Bill Passes House TennCare Subcommittee

Representative Sam Whitson with Mom and Daughter
Sarah's picture

Today HB0498/ SB0476 to create a Katie Beckett Program in TN was passed by the House TennCare Subcommittee! We are so thankful to Representative Sam Whitson and our amazing families for championing this legislation. 

Notably, a round of applause broke out when the bill passed and the Sponsor Sam Whitson asked a family, Tori and her daughter Zoey, to stand with him as he shared closing words. That doesn't happen in most committee hearings.

Recovery After a Brain Injury

Zennia and Chyna take a photo together in their car.

When Chyna was four years old, she was involved in a car crash with her grandmother. After being rushed to the hospital, doctors told Chyna’s mother, Zennia, that the injuries to her brain were very severe. 

Seven days following her traumatic brain injury (TBI), the swelling on Chyna’s brain still hadn’t gone down, so they induced her into a coma. The injury also put pressure on her eyesight, so she was essentially blind. Finally, the doctors put a stint in her brain to relieve the immense pressure. 

Amendment to Katie Beckett Legislation

Speaker Glen Casada with a family who would benefit from a Katie Beckett Program
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Amendment to Tennessee’s Katie Beckett Bill
This afternoon, sponsors of HB0498/ SB0476 filed an amendment to the bill that would define a Katie Beckett Program for Tennessee. The amendment replaces all language after the caption in the bill’s current form.

Response to Governor Lee's 2019 State of the State

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee Presenting his 2019 State of the State Address
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Tennessee Governor Bill Lee began his State of the State Address this evening with an assessment that our state is “hopeful, prosperous and strong.” We at the Tennessee Disability Coalition share our newly-elected Executive’s hope for the year ahead and belief that with collective effort we can take on our state’s tallest mountains, it’s greatest challenges.

The Effects of a Brain Injury

Yasmeene Abudhair in the hospital after her brain injury.

Before 13-year-old Yasmeene Ahmad experienced a traumatic brain injury, she was a “loving, strong, responsible, humble, courageous and friendly girl.” The injury significantly impacted her daily life. 

Yasmeene fell in a school gym one afternoon. Upon waking, she seemed disoriented and began experiencing radiating pain in her head. Christen, Yasmeen’s mother, arrived to pick her up.

“Soon after returning home, Yasmeene started throwing up, so I rushed her to the hospital,” she said. 

Advocating for a Tennessee Where Her Daughter Can Thrive

Susan and a friend pose for the camera at last year's Disability Day on the Hill.

When her daughter, Lexi, was nine months old, Susan Carr dropped her off at the daycare center before going to work at her office. Later in the afternoon, Susan received a call that would transform her into a fierce self-advocate on behalf of children and adults with disabilities. 

In 2000, Cri Du Chat syndrome, also known as 5p- Syndrome, was a rare genetic disorder that still had not been widely researched. With a chromosome deletion on chromosome 5, this caused doctors to believe the effects of this syndrome to be severely limiting. 

Three Steps to a Successful Meeting with Your Legislator

A woman greets her legislator.

Right now in Tennessee, legislative session is happening! While it’s important to advocate year-round for disability employment, now is a great time to meet with your legislators. Plus, the governor will be giving his State of the State address and budget proposal in early March. It’s important to pay attention to how the governor talks about disability employment and whether there is state funding to support further disability employment initiatives. 

Introducing the 2019 Advocacy Toolkit

LiveAble logo on blue and green background

Heading to Disability Day on the Hill on Tuesday, February 12th to speak with your legislators? Check out these resources before you go. We can’t wait to see you there!

 

Policy One Pagers

Katie Beckett-TEFRA for TN - Facts & Talking Points.docx

 

Improving pay for Direct Support Professionals:

TNCOLeaveBehindForLegislators.pdf

Tennessee's 50th Governor

Tennessee's 50th Governor Bill Lee
Sarah's picture

On this historic occasion of the inauguration of Tennessee's 50th Governor Bill Lee, the Tennessee Disability Coalition would like to share an open letter to our new Chief Executive.

January 18, 2019

Dear Governor Lee,

On behalf of the Tennessee Disability Coalition, we would like to extend our sincere congratulations on your inauguration as the 50th Governor of the great state of Tennessee. We hope that your first days in office are smooth as you begin to tackle the many important issues facing our state.

Why Inclusive Hiring is a Smart Choice: Our Response to the New York Times Article on Hiring People with Disabilities

Black and white photo of employee in a wheelchair

Response by Tom Jedlowski, Director of Communications and Technology at the Tennessee Disability Coalition

 

Recently, the New York Times ran a terrific opinion piece highlighting a very simple truth: prejudice is a profit killer. 

Many employers simply think it’s too costly to hire a person with a disability. Worse than that, many assume they’ll be unable to meet the benchmarks of the job or bring down morale. 

In reality, this is short-sighted and prejudicial. It’s just poor business sense. 

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Tennessee Disability Coalition

The Coalition is an alliance of organizations and individuals who have joined to promote the full and equal participation of men, women and children with disabilities in all aspects of life. We work together to advocate for public policy that ensures self-determination, independence, empowerment, and inclusion for people with disabilities in areas such as accessibility, education, healthcare, housing, and voting rights.

Copyright © 2018 Tennessee Disability Coalition. All Rights Reserved. Tennessee Disability Coalition

 

Contact us

Office Address
Tennessee Disability Coalition
955 Woodland Street
Nashville, TN 37206

Nashville: (615) 383-9442Toll-free: (888) 643-7811Email: coalition@tndisability.org