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Vice President of Ecuador Leads Disability Panel

Mr. Lenin Moreno, Vice President of the Republic of Ecuador, led the panel discussion “Disability Rights and Public Responsibilities: The Role of Public Policy in Fostering an Inclusive Society, The Ecuadorian Experience” at the American University campus on 8 March 2012.

The event was co-organized by the Embassy of the Republic of Ecuador in the United States and the Institute on Disability and Public Policy (IDPP). The Ambassador of Ecuador to the United States, Ms. Nathalie Cely, opened the panel discussion. High-level representatives from the U.S. government and civil society leaders also spoke on the panel, including Ms. Maria Veronica Reina, Executive Director of the Global Partnership for Disability and Development at The World Bank and an IDPP Advisory Board member; Ms. Charlotte Mcclain-Nhlapo, Coordinator for Disability and Inclusive Development at USAID; Mr. David Morrissey, Executive Director of the U.S. International Council on Disabilities; and Mr. Lee Perselay, Disability Counsel for Senator Tom Harkin on the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee. Dr. Derrick L. Cogburn, Associate Professor at American University and IDPP Executive Director, moderated the discussion.

The event, which reached room capacity, welcomed a very diverse audience, including AU students, faculty, and staff; and representatives from civil society, embassies from around the world, and disabled peoples' organizations.

The panel discussion focused on the role of public policy and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Vice President Moreno shared Ecuador’s experience of creating a more inclusive society on a university campus that is at the forefront of promoting a more inclusive, accessible, and barrier-free global society. Last summer, the School of International Service at American University launched the world’s first virtual Master’s program in disability policy: the Master’s of International Affairs in Comparative and International Disability Policy.

Vice President Moreno also discussed the Manuela Espejo program, an in-depth study conducted by the government of Ecuador to better identify the needs and provide support for the rights of persons with disabilities within Ecuador.

Accessible virtual participation was available via Blackboard Collaborate. Blackboard Collaborate allows remote participants to fully engage in the session by providing video and audio streaming, the ability “raise a hand” and ask questions verbally and via text, and chat in discussions. Virtual rooms in Blackboard Collaborate can be navigated using a screen reader, and American Sign Language interpretation and closed captioning are provided in the virtual room.

For key highlights of the event, follow the Twitter conversation by using the hashtag #MorenoAU.

Accessible recording of "Disability Rights and Public Responsibilities" panel event
(Captions available via Window>Show Closed-Captioning once in virtual session)