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Disability Awareness Day Events – 2021

“Justice & Access for All: More Important Now Than Ever”

This year, due to the pandemic VCDR hosted as series of online events as Disability Awareness Day 2021. Thes events included a Legislative Panel, a Natiional Keynote Speaker and a Youth Workshop and others. See below for links to selected events.

“Stronger Standing Together”
    Youth Workshop  –May 13 , 2021

Vermont student leaders shared their lived social experience of disability and call for respect, rights and education justice in our schools. Students, families, allies, educators and policy makers joined the conversation. This VCDR event is cosponsored by the Education Justice Coalition of Vermont.  Captioning and interpreters will be available.




Sean Barrett – Team Lead for the Office of Independent Living

April  19, 2021 

Vemont  welcomed Sean Barrett, Team Lead for the Office of Independent Living Programs within the Administration for Community Living at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. He addressed the COVID response and disability from the federal perspective. Afterward, Monica White, interim commissioner of the Vermont Department of Disabilities, Aging & Independent Living discussed the vaccine rollout and disability in Vermont. 




“Conversation with Vermont Legislators”

Personal Experiences – Legislative Panel

March 17, 2021

Rep. John Killacky –

Rep. Anne Donahue –

Sen. Anthony Pollina –

Rep. Kevin “Coach” Christie

The Legislators shared  their personal experiences with disabilities related to their legislative work, and the legislative response to the COVID pandemic.  Attendees were able to ask legislators questions and it was a lively interactive exchange!  VCDR Past President, Ed Paquin moderated the panel.




Thanks  to VCDR Members and the Vermont Developmental Disabilities Council.


VCDR Disability Awareness Day 2020 – Cancelled



STATE of VERMONT Concurrent Resolution

No. R-339. House concurrent resolution remembering former Rutland City Board of Aldermen President David Sagi on Disability Awareness Day.


Offered by: Representatives Killacky of South Burlington, Cupoli of Rutland City, Fagan of Rutland City, Haas of Rochester, Howard of Rutland City, Lanpher of Vergennes, Notte of Rutland City, Pugh of South Burlington, Redmond of Essex, Townsend of South Burlington, Wood of Waterbury, and Yacovone of Morristown

Offered by: Senators Collamore, Hooker, and McNeil

Whereas, David Sagi was long associated with disability issues, and he served two terms as President of the Rutland Board of Aldermen, and

Whereas, he was a cofounder and board member of the Vermont Center for Independent Living, the nation’s first statewide independent living center, and

Whereas, among his public-sector positions, David Sagi was Vermont’s first Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Employment Coordinator and worked as the ADA Program Manager for the Department of Disabilities, Aging, and Independent Living, and

Whereas, Vermont’s David Sagi Memorial Spirit of the ADA Award was named in his honor, and Disability Awareness Day is an ideal occasion to remember David Sagi, who died in February 2019, now therefore be it

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives:

That the General Assembly remembers former Rutland City Board of Aldermen President David Sagi on Disability Awareness Day and extends its sincere condolences to his family, and be it further

Resolved: That the Secretary of State be directed to send a copy of this resolution to the members of David Sagi’s family and to the Vermont Coalition for Disability Rights.

Disability Awareness Day 2020 Cancelled

The Vermont Coalition for Disability Rights (VCDR) has decided to cancel Disability Awareness Day at the Statehouse that had been scheduled for this Thursday, March 12, 2020.

 We are doing this in light of concerns around the coronavirus and people with disabilities and elders being more at risk of getting very sick from the virus and potentially not fully recovering.

 Disability Awareness Day is an important opportunity that brings together over 300 people with disabilities and allies annually. The decision to cancel this event was a difficult one. We know our important advocacy work needs to continue.



In Solidarity,

Sarah Launderville

VCDR President