For Immediate Release
August 14, 2017
Contact: David Card
WASHINGTON – The following statement is issued by Curt Decker, executive director of the National Disability Rights Network:
“Like all Americans who understand our nation was founded on the principles of liberty, equality, respect for diversity, and justice for all, I watched the events that occurred in Charlottesville this past weekend in utter dismay.
“What is happening to our country? This is not the America that I know.
“In America we do not hate others for their differences. We embrace them because their uniqueness makes us stronger. And we do not carry torches meant to strike fear in the hearts of our fellow Americans. We light the flame of liberty.
“Some might question why a disability rights organization would choose to comment on these events. The answer is simple.
“People with disabilities are often the first victims of extremists and their hate-filled vision of society. They are also people of color, immigrants, refugees, members of the LGBTQIA community, and members of every religious group. They are a portion of the many groups who were the target of violence in Charlottesville.
“So I want to be clear on this point. The National Disability Rights Network stands on the side of all those who rejected hate in Charlottesville. There is right and there is wrong. And the so-called “Unite the Right” extremists who took to the streets to intimidate and commit violence are wrong.
“We mourn the loss of Heather Heyer who was killed by their hatred and we thank the courageous individuals in Charlottesville who risked their lives to defend equality.
“NDRN will continue to work with the many civil rights groups who share our values of community and inclusion for all until hatred, bigotry, and racism are extinguished for good.”
# # #
The National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) is the nonprofit membership organization for the federally mandated Protection and Advocacy (P&A) Systems and the Client Assistance Programs (CAP) for individuals with disabilities. Collectively, the Network is the largest provider of legally based advocacy services to people with disabilities in the United States.