03/18/18 – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
For More Information:
Mike Oxford: (785) 224-3865
Cal Montgomery: (312) 813-6816 (text only)
Priya Penner: (585) 944-3086
Marilee Adamski-Smith: (715) 204-4152
WHO: National ADAPT
WHAT: ADAPT activists invite Scott Gottlieb’s neighbors to get to know them at block party
WHERE: Pennsylvania Ave and L St. NW, Washington, DC 20037
WHEN: Sunday, March 18, 2018 from noon to 5pm
ADAPT Throws Block Party for FDA Director Gottlieb’s Neighbors
03/18/2018 – Washington, D.C. Disability rights activists from ADAPT, who have been camped out in front of FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb’s home since March 9th, have invited neighbors to a Sunday afternoon block party. ADAPT’s hope is to offer the neighbors a better understanding about why they are there and why it is so important to end to the almost 2-year delay in banning the use of electric shocks on disabled people as a punitive “treatment.”
“When we first got here some of the neighbors were angry at us, but they became supportive once we explained the issue,” said Jensen Caraballo, an ADAPT member from Rochester, NY. “People don’t realize taxpayers are paying for children and adults to be tortured with FDA consent. As soon as they do, they are naturally outraged at Gottlieb too.”
At issue is the practice of using painful electric shocks to punish people for “behaviors” including failing to immediately follow staff commands and closing their eyes for 15 seconds. This practice only occurs at the Judge Rotenberg Center (JRC) in Canton, Massachusetts – no other facility in the nation uses electric shock devices as a form of involuntary “treatment” on disabled people. In April of 2016, the FDA announced that the risk that these shock devices pose is “substantial and unreasonable” and that they would be banned, but that has not yet happened.
“As soon as I learned this was happening, I knew we needed to stop it,” said Dawn Russell, an organizer of the Atlantis ADAPT chapter from Denver, Colorado. “I believe that as soon as Scott Gottlieb’s neighbors understand what is happening at the JRC, they will become our best allies in demanding that he do the right thing and release the regulations.”
For decades ADAPT has worked to secure for disabled Americans the same rights and liberties enjoyed by their nondisabled neighbors. Learn more about ADAPT’s history and activities at www.adapt.org, on social media with the NationalADAPT Facebook page and on the @NationalADAPT Twitter, and under the hashtag #ADAPTandRESIST. You can also follow the fight against the JRC shock device at www.adapt.org/jrc and #StopTheShock.