Disability Rights Washington’s Breaking Barriers Awards
Disability Rights Washington currently is soliciting nominations for the Breaking Barriers Awards. These prestigious awards honor a business, an elected official or public servant, and an advocate with a disability for breaking barriers to advance the rights of and improve the lives of people with disabilities in Washington State. Specifically, Disability Rights Washington will present the following awards:
- Advocacy Award
- Public Policy Award
- Business Leader Award
2018 Nomination Timeline
- March 21, 2018 – Award Nominations Open
- April 20, 2018 – Deadline for all nomination submissions. Disability Rights Washington’s Awards Committee will only consider applications that include all required information.
- May 23, 2018 – Honorees announced
- September 29, 2018 – Awards presented at the Panoramic Center at the Pacific Tower in Seattle
Making a Nomination
Your nominations are critical to Disability Rights Washington’s ability to honor members of our community and their exemplary achievements that advance the civil rights of people with disabilities. To submit a nomination, please fill out the forms listed below each award decription.
Disability Rights Washington presents this award to an advocate with a disability who has made significant contributions in the past year to advance the rights of people with disabilities in Washington State. To nominate an advocate, please fill out this nomination form.
Public Policy Award
Disability Rights Washington presents this award to an elected official or public servant who has made very significant contributions to the rights of people with disabilities in Washington State. To nominate an elected official or public servant, please fill out this nomination form.
Business Leader Award
Disability Rights Washington presents this award to a business or organization that has made a significant contribution to advancing the rights and/or lives of people with disabilities in Washington State. The advancement may come in many ways including progressive employment practices, technological advances, and anti-stigma policies and practices. The business must operate in Washington State. To nominate a business, please fill out this nomination form.
Previous Award Recipients
The following recipients of the Breaking Barriers Awards were honored at Disability Rights Washington’s 2nd Annual celebration, “Breaking Barriers,” on September 23, 2017.
Since Mike spent 20 years living in a state institution and has known the value of living in the community for more than 40 years since then, he has fought to use his voice to close institutions and help people live successfully in the community. He shares his story with legislators and works to convince them that living in the community with funded services is what people with DD really want. State institutions are a thing of the past.
This should be a Lifetime Achievement Award for the numerous accomplishments, too many to detail, that Mike has been a part of throughout his life. His story is in book form, in video podcasts as well as on television.
Shirley has helped foster respect for the rights of people with disabilities in our courts. The payoff for people with disabilities is that the judges, lawyers, and guardians they encounter are more likely to listen to them, accommodate effectively, not respond based on stereotypes, and generally respond with justice and respect for rights.
Among her many responsibilities at the Administrative Office of Courts, Shirley is the manager of the Office of Public Guardianship. She recognizes that guardianship is frequently not the appropriate answer when people need help with decision-making, and has worked to increase the availability of less-restrictive options, including supported decision-making planning. She is also responsible for implementing major reforms in our state’s professional guardianship training and discipline system. Shirley is an innovator, a civil-rights champion, and a person who can get things done!
This will be our only opportunity to recognize this splendid public servant, as she and her family moved out of state in fall 2017.
More than 200 people with developmental disabilities now have meaningful employment with real wages through Microsoft’s Real Estate & Facilities Supported Employment Program. The benefit of this program accrues to all parties: Microsoft and it’s vendors obtain reliable work from employees with great attitudes; Microsoft employees benefit from the presence and diversity of this workforce; and employees with developmental disabilities have meaningful employment where they earn real wages including pay raises. Microsoft’s scalable program innovatively encourages its vendors to have more inclusive and diverse employment practices creating meaningful employment opportunities for people with disabilities. It serves as a model for businesses of all sizes to break the barriers to meaningful employment for people with disabilities.