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National Down Syndrome Society Brings 350 Advocates To Capitol Hill For Annual Down Syndrome Advocacy Conference
April 13, 2023 (Washington, D.C.) – The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) will host their annual Down Syndrome Advocacy Conference April 17 – 19, 2023 in Washington, D.C. This event will bring over 350 advocates, including over 100 advocates with Down syndrome, from 42 states and the District of Columbia to advocate for legislative priorities that impact the Down syndrome community. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event is being held for the first time since 2019.
The conference is held in partnership with advocacy partners, the National Down Syndrome Congress (NDSC) and the Global Down Syndrome Foundation (GLOBAL) as well as the Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action (DSAIA), GiGi’s Playhouse Down Syndrome Achievement Centers (GiGi’s Playhouse), and LuMind IDSC Foundation (LuMind IDSC). This is the first time these national groups have come together for this event.
Attendees will advocate for nondiscrimination in the organ transplant system, elimination of subminimum wage, inclusion of the Down syndrome community in Alzheimer’s disease initiatives, and more.
“We are thrilled to be returning to Capitol Hill alongside our partners and so many advocates to ensure that Congress hears directly from our community about issues that impact them,” said NDSS President and CEO Kandi Pickard. “Advocates within the Down syndrome community are passionate, and I’m grateful for this opportunity to speak to Congress with a united voice.”
Attendees will take part in policy and advocacy training days on April 17th and 18th and will attend hundreds of meetings on Capitol Hill on April 19th.
The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) is the leading human rights organization for all individuals with Down syndrome. NDSS empowers individuals with Down syndrome and their families by providing resources, driving policy change, engaging with local communities, and shaping public perceptions. Founded in 1979, NDSS supports and advocates for the Down syndrome community by focusing on three key areas of programming: Resources & Support, Policy & Advocacy and Community Engagement. Within these focus areas NDSS engages in various activities, events, and programs on topics that are critical to our community such as federal and state advocacy and public policy, health and wellness, education, and employment. NDSS creates resources to support individuals with Down syndrome, their families, and caregivers across the lifespan and hosts community events throughout the country including the National Buddy Walk® Program, the Times Square Video presentation and New York City Buddy Walk®, Racing for 3.21 for World Down Syndrome Day, Run for 3.21, and various other events. Visit www.ndss.org for more information.