People with Disabilities Awareness Day at the State Capitol gives people with disabilities and advocates like you a chance to talk with decision-makers who can preserve or expand services that make a critical difference in the lives of Oklahomans with disabilities. Last year,
more than 550 people participated in this free event, which is hosted by the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services and friends. This year, our goal is for 75 percent of Awareness Day participants to visit state senators and representatives or their staff on April
17. Volunteers will be available to take you on legislative visits and provide other assistance.
The more people that the legislators see, the bigger the impact. If each person who comes brings just one other person with them, our effect will be much greater. Talk to your friends - find out who you can bring with you to People with Disabilities Awareness Day 2012. Who knows - you may find you have many people who would support this great awareness opportunity.
Please help us plan for the event by registering here. We will look up your state senators and representatives and have that information for you when you check in on the first floor of the State Capitol on People with Disabilities Awareness Day.
More than 60 volunteers will support People with Disabilities Awareness Day 2012. You can tell your story to state legislators and staff and explain about the positive impact of critical disability programs.
More than 60 outstanding exhibitors will share valuable information on
the second and fourth floor rotundas (center areas) of the State Capitol. You can also meet and unite with other disability advocates to address the growing needs of 600 thousand Oklahomans with disabilities.
Noon — Registration / Check-In 1st Floor Rotunda
12:30 p.m. — Legislative Visits - 3rd, 4 th & 5th Floors
Exhibits Open – 2nd and 4th Floor Rotundas
3:30 p.m. — Welcome by DRS Director Mike O’Brien and Awareness Day Awards Presentation with DRS Commissioners Lynda Collins, Ray Kirk and Steve Shelton - Southside Capital Steps (or 2nd Floor Blue Room if weather is not in our favor).
4:30 p.m. — End of Event
Advocacy in action is what People with Disabilities Awareness Day is all about. But we can’t get that message
across without you! Attend this event, invite others to come and plan now to
visit your legislators. Experienced volunteers can demonstrate how legislative visits work and take you to talk to your legislators on a first come, first served basis. If legislative visits are new to you, call 405-951-3478 or e-mail
firstname.lastname@example.org, or ask for help at the registration desk.
Remember: The legislator's job is to be in committee meetings or on the floor of the Senate or House of Representatives when state business is being conducted. If your legislator is not in the office, please give your message to the staff. Legislators depend heavily on their staff and often receive information this way. We’ll have People with Disabilities Awareness Day calling cards so you can leave written messages.
Tip: You have a better chance of talking to your legislator in person if you call to make an appointment at least two weeks before Awareness Day.
Find out who your legislators are here. Then call for appointments: Senate 800.865.6490. House of Representatives: 800.522.8502.
To stand united, we encourage all to wear green on this day, if you can.
When those who work at the capitol see a lot of people in the halls or
rotunda all wearing disability-awareness green, our efforts have an even
Keep up on the activities of our state and federal lawmakers with the Legislative Updates. You can also learn how to effect change with our lawmakers through the Oklahoma Rehabilitation Council's (ORC) Legislative Advocacy Toolbox. This has informative links to assist you in learning how to successfully advocate for people with disabilities or key issues important to them.
Check out this year's PWDAD flyer. Help spread the word and send it to all your friends. Tell them how important it is to inform our state legislators about the issues that affect the disability community and for all of us to stand united.
People with Disabilities Awareness Day always has great exhibits with a vast assortment of information. Due to limited space, booths are by invitation only and free of charge. Go to the Exhibitors' page or contact Dana Tallon at 800.845.8476 for unloading and set up information.
Please park on the south side of the State Capitol. Accessible parking is located at the base of the south steps. Overflow parking is available at the Jim Thorpe Building west of Lincoln Blvd.