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In an effort to continue to focus on the prevention of primary and secondary disabilities, the National Council will
cosponsor with the Centers for Disease Control the first national
conference on the prevention of disabilities. The conference will
focus on four working papers in the following areas: quality of
life; birth defects and developmental disabilities; chronic conditions and injuries. This national ocnference will serve as
the basis for the development of a national plan for the prevention
of primary and secondary disabilities.
You might recall, that the
National Council first recommended this plan in its 1986 special
report, Toward Independence.
The National Council continues to work with the Centers for
Disease Control on the prevention initiative.
We appreciate your
support, Senator Harkin for introducing the Disabilities Prevention
Act of 1991.
The National Council focus continues to be on the
prevention of secondary disabilties. For the most part, most of the people we represent already have disabilities, and we interested in the prevention of secondary complications.
The National Council plans to conduct four meetings during
the fiscal year as required by statute. In addition, the National
Council will continue to publish its quarterly newsletter FOCUS to share information regarding activities of the National Council on Disability and to request input regarding the National Council's
activities and policy development.
The National Council on Disability's authorizing statute, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, is scheduled to expire on September 30, 1991. The National Council will be submitting its reauthorization
proposals to Congress together with the Administration's proposals
for revising and extending the other authorities under the Act.
PLANNED ACTIVITIES SUMMARY FOR FISCAL YEAR 1992
the National Council will
continue its follow-up and monitoring activities pursuant to the Congressional mandate to assess progress made on each of the 45 legislative recommendations in its 1986 special report, Toward Independence. The 1992 report may contain data on such subjects as the economics of disability, employment, personal assistance, technological devices and services for person with disabilities and prevention.
President's Committee on Employment of people with Disabilities, as
well as provide recommendations and advice to the Commissioner of the Rehabilitation Services Administration.
The National Council plans to hold four quarterly meetings.
In order to receive input from consumers, the National Council will
disabilities such as: technological aids and devices for person with disabilities; prevention of primary and secondary
Council's advisors. The National Council will continue to focus on
minorities with disabilities including Native Americans and people
with disabilities in rural areas.
Major activities for Fiscal Year 1992 include the following:
continuation of the National Council's initiatives in the following areas: prevention; employment; technical assistance
accessibility; personal assistance; health insurance; and,
assure coordination of programs and services affecting people with disabilities, the National Council will continue its participation in such initiatives as the Interagency
Committee on Handicapped Research, the Federal Agency Council,
the Federal Task Force on Disabled Persons, and other similar
The National Council will continue to publish its quarterly
newsletter FOCUS to share information regarding activities of the National Council on Disability and to request input regarding its activities and the development of disability
Thank you for the opportunity to testify before the Subcommittee.
I would be pleased to answer any questions.
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF SANDRA S. PARRINO
As the Chairperson of the National Council on Disability, Sandra Swift Parrino has played an active role on key issues affecting individuals with disabilities. Since her nomination by President Reagan in 1983, Mrs. Parrino has supported the rights of the disabled with the Federal Government, before Congress, in the media, and in front of countless groups nationwide. Under her leadership, the National Council is a driving force for disability concerns with respect to public policies that affect the Nation's disabled.
The Chairperson, along with the other members, is appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate, and is charged by the Congress to be
independent voice for individuals with disabilities within the Federal Government. The Council's mission is to review policies and programs which impact upon persons with disabilities and make recommendations to the President and Congress concerning how these policies can be improved.
During Mrs. Parrino's tenure as Chairperson, the National Council has:
*Worked toward the creation and enactment of legislation for individuals with disabilities.
*Issued a policy statement entitled "National Policy for
*Convened a series of hearings around the country to solicit comments and recommendations from the disabled regarding the discrimination they face from day to day.
*Issued a major report to the President and Congress entitled "Toward Independence," which outlined the key components required
comprehensive civil rights legislation protecting persons with disabilities.
the Threshold of Independence, a report that outlined the specifics of the Americans With Disabilities Act.
Before being named Chairperson, Mrs. Parrino was a Peer Reviewer for the U.S. Department of Education, Rehabilitation Services Administration, where she reviewed, evaluated, and commented on grant applications at the federal and state levels. In 1982, Mrs. Parrino was a feature writer for the Arthritis Foundation of New York, as well as an editor for Parke-Davis, /Warner Lambert and Eli Lilly. Mrs. Parrino, in 1979, became the Founder and Director of the Office for the Disabled, Towns of Ossining/Briarcliff Manor, New York.
Additionally, Mrs. Parrino has more than 25 years experience serving on boards, councils, commissions, committees and task forces at the federal, state, regional and local levels as an expert witness, community leader, organizer and planner, and lobbyist.
Mrs. Parrino has recently returned from Helsinki, Finland, where she had been invited to participate in the Meeting of Experts on Alternative Ways to Mark the End of the United Nations Decade of Disabled Persons. She also served as an American Representative to the United Nations and UNICEF for the International Year of Disabled Persons.
Sandra Swift Parrino graduated from Briarcliff College with an A.B. in History, and completed courses at Bennett College, Guildhall School in London, and the Yale School of Languages. Mrs. Parrino is married and has three children, two with disabilities. She resides in Briarcliff Manor, New York and was born in New Haven, Connecticut.
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF JOHN A. GANNON
John A. Gannon, of Washington, D.C., is the founder of John A. Gannon and Associated. His firm has offices in Columbus and Cleveland, Ohio; Denver, Colorado; and Washington, D.C. A working fire fighter for more than 30 years, Mr. Gannon was an active leader of the IAFF's (International Association of Fire Fighters.) Local 93. Starting as a member of the local IAFF's committee, he eventually became its president, a position he held for 10 years before being elected to national office. In September 1988, Mr. Gannon was elected President Emeritus of the IAFF. He had served as president of the 170,000 member organization since 1980. As president, he successfully helped the organization overcome intense financial crisis. Under Mr. Gannon's leadership, the IAFF greatly expanded its role in matters of occupational safety and health. Concerned about the hazards of the profession, he guided and directed a series of programs designed to develop greater safety and health protection. One such program involved
sponsoring research safer garments and equipment for fire fighters. Mr. Gannon also fostered the development of the IAFF Burn Foundation which raises funds for research on the care of burn victims. In 1985, the Metropolitan General Hospital in Mr. Gannon's hometown of Cleveland, dedicated a John A. Gannon Burn and Trauma Center in recognition of his support for the hospital and his personal campaign to induce the hospital to establish a specialized burn department.
Mr. Gannon was elected vice president of the AFL-CIO, to which the IAFF is affiliated within the AFL-CIO, he is vice president of the Public Employee Department. On the Executive Council, he is a member of several specialized committees. He serves on the board of the National Joint Council of Fire Service Organizations, and in 1982 he served as its chairman. He is also a member of the board of the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
Mr. Gannon attended Miami University in Ohio and Glasgow University in Scotland, and he also studied at BaldwinWallace College and cleveland State University.
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF ETHEL D. BRIGGS
The National Council was fortunate in selecting Ethel D. Briggs as the Executive Director. In her seven years at the National Council, Ms. Briggs served in several position, which included: the Acting Executive Director; the Deputy Executive Director; and the Director of Adult Services.
Previously Ms. Briggs was Chief of the Office of Staff Development and Training for the Washington, D.C., Rehabilitation Services Administration. Her prior experience included employment as rehabilitation counselor supervisor, vocational rehabilitation counselor and part-time college instructor. Ethel D. Briggs, a long-time advocate of people with disabilities, graduated from North Carolina Central University and holds a master's degree in counseling from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has also been recognized by Dollar & Sense Magazine, as One of the Top 100 African American Business and Professional Women of 1989. In addition,
Briggs has also been recognized in Outstanding Women in America in 1976 and by Who's Who in American Colleges and Universities in 1971.
Senator HARKIN. Ms. Parrino, thank you very much for your testimony and for your kind words. I just want to reciprocate and say thanks you to you personally for leading the charge on this, on getting the ADA formulated several years ago. I remember the first meeting we had in then Senator Weicker's office, and that must have been about, what, 1988?
Ms. PARRINO. In 1987.
Senator HARKIN. I must admit that at the time I thought that, well, maybe some day we might get it through. I did not know exactly when. But through your effort I just want to thank you, the Board, and all the people on the National Council for all you
have done. Just outstanding work, and I really appreciate it.
Ms. PARRINO. We appreciate it.
Senator HARKIN. And I know I can speak for all the members of the subcommittee in saying that.
Ms. PARRINO. Thank you.
Senator HARKIN. Most of the questions that I have I will submit to you in writing. We have some budget questions and things like that, and we will not get into all that now, but we will send those