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Why Not

I am a husband, father, son, brother, uncle and friend. I believe in sharing my talents and experiences by giving back to the community by giving my time to coaching, church and especially to the disability community. I truly believe that all men and women are created equally.

Spending cuts for individuals with disabilities

I read an article recently where the state of South Carolina wants to cut benefits to over 26,000 people with various disabilities.

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Only 3 days into the week and I have left phone and email messages for 2 different companies on 2 separate occasions.  I have yet to receive a call or email back.  What has happened to professional communication and customer service?

Is it because we have stripped down companies to the very bare minimum in regards to employees? If the only thing that a company has to offer is service, both in performance and customer communication, then they should be very good at it.  If companies continue to strip themselves down, eventually they will begin to lose their advantage. If this practice continues, then they may be out of business.

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Is Government Listening?

Abraham Lincoln said at his Gettysburg Address “government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth”. Does this still hold true today? It seems to me that all levels of government are not of the people nor are they for the people anymore. It seems to be of the few people and for the few people. The few people are the ones with the money who donate the most money to campaigns to gain an advantage in legislation, in an effort to boost their bottom lines, which in turn boost their own pockets.

I consider myself to be very liberal socially yet conservative fiscally. I believe that the health care system needs reforming. As I look at the health care system debate. I do not agree with everything in the current plan, but we need to have some place to start.  I see benefits in the plan for people with disabilities. I do not like how much it is going to cost the tax payers initially.

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I thought that I heard that there was a Q & A at the monthly Chamber of Commerce luncheon this week.  Other then those in attendance, has anybody heard how it went? Is this like the Mayoral Forum in a couple of weeks? 

If a tree falls in the forest and nobody is around, does it still make a sound?

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Cudahy Police Department

This afternoon, following another Bucks victory, the Cudahy Police Department took on the South Milwaukee Police in the Battle of the Badges.

The Cudahy PD raced out to an early lead and never looked back.  The final score was 53 - 39.  It was fun watching Cudahy's finest "race" up and down the Bucks home floor.  One wife commented that she prefers when they play the fire department becuase at least they are trained EMT's.

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Importance of the Census

This is a copy of an email I received from DAWN (Disability Advocates: Wisconsin Network)  Here is another reason why filling out the forms and returning them are so important.

The 2010 Census forms will be mailed to households starting this week.

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We have 18 days until the next Mayor of Cudahy is elected. Whether it be Mayor McCue or Mr. Day, I wish them both luck.

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Working Together for Equality

Now that I have spent about a year on the Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities (BPDD), I have a greater appreciation for what, we as a Board, are working on. Over the next few weeks, I plan on making followers of this blog aware of what we are working on and how the issues can be incorporated into our everyday lives. While these ideals are designed to help people with developmental disabilities (DD), there are ways that we can all benefit from the ideas in our everyday life.

I currently serve on the Nominating and Membership Committee. One of the tasks that we face is to ensure diversity on the board. The board is broken down into 5 groups. The most important group that is represented is People with DD. It is because of their input that we are able to make educated decisions. Their insight as to how the system affects them is probably our most important resource. 

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Equality Part 2

As I mentioned, I am going to follow up the information from my experiences on the Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities and compare it to everyday life. I forgot to mention that we actively recruit members. I have attended various events and talked to individuals who I thought might be a good fit on the Board/

As I outlined my role on the BPDD, we work hard at bringing diversity to our Board. As far as I am concerned, the more ideas, from various view points, brought to the table the better. As I mentioned while campaigning for Mayor, the only bad idea is the one not presented. The following information comes from data provided by the City of Cudahy web site:

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As part of my responsabilites being a board member on the Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities, here is what we do in regards to Self-Determination.

People with Developmental Disabilities (DD) will make choices and have control over their lives. Adults with DD who receive long term-care services will be more included in the community by directing their public resources to supports of their choice.

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Self-Determination 2

We as citizens will make choices and have control over our lives as well.  We also need to be more included in the community by directing public resources to supports of our choice. We must be willing to become part of the community though. If we are not willing to become part of the community, then we have nobody to blame but ourselves if we do not like the outcomes. 

We need to ensure that our local, state and national elected officials are providing us with correct knowledge of the issues. We can’t allow them to leave any stone unturned. Poor information provided to us can only produce poor outcomes. How can anybody make a sound decision when we are not given all of the facts?  As elected officials, it should be their obligation to just present the material and not present it in a way that will sway people one way or the other. Just present the facts.

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Advocacy and Organizing

People with disabilities and their families will become a strong, statewide network of effective advocates. People with disabilities and family members will be effective advocates for systems change through participation in the DAWN (Disability Advocates Wisconsin Network).

We strive to have people with disabilities and their family members to become community organizers who will provide training and support for grassroots groups. It is important that the people whose lives are most impacted by the way the system is set up should be the ones who speak out for and against the issues. Who better to understand the effects of the system then those who live with a disability and/or those who care for an individual with a disability?

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Advocacy and Organizing 2

We must have all of our elected officials and any other group that uses Cudahy in its name to be strong advocates for the city. Whether it is the Mayor, Alderpersons, Cudahy Chamber of Commerce, Cudahy School District or the Cudahy Family Library, all must have a strong commitment to the to the City and in promoting the City. Everybody needs to work together to sell the City.

It should be a goal of the elected officials, starting with the Mayor to organize the various groups that represent the City and have them work as one.  There must be an open exchange of ideas between the leaders and those they are working with. While the leadership may have one set if ideas that they are trying to promote, they must be open to compromise. The leadership must be willing to accept the fact that while they think their ideas is best for the City; they must realize that they are representing an entire City.  A City may have as many different ideas as it has residents. All must be heard.

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Campaign Literature

I was asked my thoughts on some recent campaign literature that that has arrived at the house.

First a couple of flyers arrived lacking contact information for the candidates. One was for Clerk Treasurer and the other for a school board member.  For those who know me, know that during my campaign for mayor I was very big on communication.  Communication of elected officials with the citizens they represent is one of the very most important functions that they perform.  Why was this over looked?

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Educating the Public

Back to my experiences on the Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities

The public will see people with disabilities as valued individuals. Policy-makers and the general public will understand disability issues.

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