The Michigan Disability Rights Coalition (MDRC) is an organization that has been around since 1982, helping people with disabilities. MDRC is a disability justice movement working to transform communities. MDRC’s vision is to “work to build opportunities for people with disabilities so they may live fully integrated lives within their chosen communities, now and in the future.” Along with more than 15 independent living facilities across Michigan, the organization offers leadership training for individuals with disabilities and supports people who are already leaders with disabilities. “The Michigan Assistive Technology Program (MATP) offers a series of web conferences, ‘webinars’ on assistive technology topics,” says Norman G. DeLisle Jr., the Executive Director at the Michigan Disability Rights Coalition. “We usually get somewhere between 30 to 40 people to watch.” The MDRC also helps people with disabilities receive loans in order to get things that would improve their lives in positive ways, including loans for hearing aids, vans with lifts or special bathrooms. “Our loans can range from $200 to $30,000 depending on the person’s needs,” says DeLisle. MDRC doesn’t directly help people with their issues, but instead helps people to find a solution. They help people spend more time receiving the help or treatment rather than looking for it. MDRC assists people in finding health care plans that will work for people with disabilities. Much of MDRC’s role is to be a part of all health care policy changes because of the impact these changes have on the community. A number of people have had to struggle for adequate health care, spending more time finding help then getting it. MDRC promotes health care reform that makes it easier for people to get the help they need. They also get involved in health care on a local, state and sometimes national level. To learn more visit www.copower.org.
Kyle Dowling is an employee of M3 Group and is pursuing a writing degree at LCC. He enjoys fiction writing, video games and movies.