Fostering Inclusion During Jewish Disability Awareness Month

February 20, 2015

by Sierra Weiss
The emotions associated with the word ‘disability’ have evolved considerably over the past century. It’s also a less controversial topic among popular culture. From the newly released ‘The Theory of Everything’, about a world-renowned physicist and mathematician afflicted with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, to the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. From the award-winning book turned Broadway play ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time’, to Glee’s star Lauren Potter who has Down syndrome, the concept of disability is on many minds.

In this era of newfound acceptance, education and inclusion have become key components in providing the disabled with the opportunity to reach their full potential. As society becomes increasingly more inclusive, it is wonderful to witness the success of people with disabilities in many different facets of life, while inspiring others to do the same.

This February is Jewish Disability Awareness Month and JScreen is thrilled to be a part of the growth of more accepting and understanding communities. JScreen deeply appreciates the importance of celebrating inclusion.

Further more, we strongly believe in the value of education. To help foster inclusion, it is necessary to modify preconceived notions, and this happens through education. To this end, JScreen is thankful to be a part of Emory University, which offers exceptional educational opportunities on the subject of disabilities. Through outstanding research on autism spectrum disorders, being home to one of the country’s leading Down Syndrome Clinics, and offering an amazing Disabilities Studies Initiative, Emory is a great home base for the JScreen program. We’re emboldened and inspired by the many passionate people, professionals, and organizations that share our goal of educating others about disabilities.

During this month of awareness, let us remember that, regardless of our abilities or disabilities, we are all phenomenal human beings!

Headquartered in Atlanta at Emory University’s Department of Human Genetics, JScreen is a national non-profit offering at-home comprehensive and affordable genetic testing and counseling.

ReproGEN – determines risk for having a child with a genetic disease

CancerGEN – tests for genetic changes that increase risk for many types of cancer

If a person or couples’ risk is elevated, genetic counselors will privately address the results, options and resources to help plan for a healthy future.

JScreen believes that a combination of education, access to state-of-the-art testing technology, and personalized support by qualified medical professionals are key to preventing devastating genetic diseases.