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Word to End the R Word Activities Start Wednesday All Across the Region
Record Number of Organizations Planning Pledge Campaigns and Events - City of Rochester, Hospitals, High Schools, Sports Teams, Colleges and Businesses
ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- February 27, 2017 --
record number of organizations will join the Golisano Foundation this week to Spread the Word to End the R-Word™.
Spread the Word to End the R-Word
asks people to pledge to take a stand against using the R-word, "retard" or "retarded," a word that
is offensive and derogatory to people with developmental disabili
ties. It is being held on and around the national Spread the Word to End the Word day of awareness on March 1.
The Rochester movement has become the largest in the country for a single region.
"Most people who use the words retard or retarded do not mean to be hurtful, but to the millions of people around the world have intellectual and developmental disabilities, and their families and friends, it is hurtful, it is a form of bullying, and is as cruel and offensive as any other slur," said Ann Costello, Executive Director of the Golisano Foundation.
Spread the Word to End the Word was founded in 2009 and is an ongoing effort by Special Olympics (SO), Best Buddies to inspire respect and acceptance. The Golisano Foundation has spearheaded this initiative in Rochester since 2011. The goal is to promote more inclusive communities for people with disabilities and special needs, and reach out to more people who can spread the word and pledge to use respectful language that promotes more accepting attitudes for all people. The R-Word initiative also helps celebrate the unique gifts and talents
that people with intellectual and developmental disabilities
have and can share with the world.
To date more than 50 regional organizations and associates of the Golisano Foundation are planning Spread the Word to End the Word pledge activities. Additional activities will be announced as details come in.
"Our thanks to everyone w
ho has stepped up to spread the word," added Costello. "We hope even more schools, businesses, organizations and communities will join our
to take the pledge to end the r-word and use the new r-word, respect. It's easy, it doesn't cost anything and takes just a minute to take the pledge online. We also invite people to come to one of the many pledge events, take the pledge and show your support, because it can make a big difference. Let's build on the awareness and keep the message going."
Special Events - Open to the Public
- March 1 - City of Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren will host a Press Conference and Proclaim the Day End the R Word Day.
- WHEN: 10 a.m.,
- WHERE: City Hall, 30 Church Street
- WHO: Mayor Lovely Warren, City Council President Loretta Scott, Golisano Foundation Director Ann Costello, Arc of Monroe CEO Barb Wale, Project Search City of Rochester interns and employees
- The public is invited to take the pledge at City Hall anytime from 10 a.m. on March 1st and throughout the month of March in the Visitors' Room of City Hall, which is just inside the Church Street entrance.
- City Media Contact: Tiana Stephens, 585.428.6678
- March 2 - Rochester Premiere of the film, "Diffability Hollywood," & Panle Discussion to Follow
- WHERE: Little Theatre 5, 240 East Avenue,
- WHEN: 6-8:30 p.m., FREE
- WHO: Adrian Esposito, Filmmaker, from Rochester and has Asperger's Syndrome, a form of autism; and Jack Garner, writer and D&C Film Critic
- Diffability Hollywood is a documentary about Hollywood's portrayal of people with disabilities in films throughout history.
- Presented as part of the WXXI and Golisano Foundation's Move to Include initiative
- March 3 - Rochester's First Inclusive Fashion Show
- WHO: Hosted by Best Buddies Nazareth and featuring models from Pittsford Central School District, Brighton Central School District and Nazareth College
- WHERE: Nazareth College, 4245 East Avenue,
- WHEN: 7-9 p.m.
- Tickets and More Info
The following Rochester organizations
will be Spreading the Word to End the Word on March 1 and other days with pledge activities on site, email and social media campaigns and more.
- Apresto Corp
- AVS Active Wear
Baytrail Middle School
Best Buddies - each school chapter will have an event
- Bishop Kearney HS
- Brighton High School
- Bulb Direct
Catholic Charities Community Services
Churchville High School
- City of Rochester
- Pledge station at City Hall throughout March; Press conference on March 1 hosted by City of Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren (See above)
- Companion Radio
- Cornell University
- Dansville High School
- Eastman Institute of Oral Health
- Fairport High School
- Gates High School
- Golisano Children's Hospital, University of Rochester Medical Center
- Greece Odyssey High School
- Harter Secrest & Emery LLP
- Hilton High School
- Holy Childhood - Buddies will be joining their peer buddies at Bishop Kearney for lunch and "bring a buddy to school."
- Institute for Innovative Transition, University of Rochester Warner School
- LEND Fellows
- Mary Cariola Children's Center
- McQuaid Jesuit High School - assembly on March 8
- Monroe Community College
- Nazareth College
Norman Howard School
Our Lady of Mercy High School - assembly
- Penfield High School
- Pittsford Middle Schools - Special Olympics NY Unified Game, March 16th
- Pittsford-Mendon High School
- Roberts Wesleyan College
- Rochester Institute of Technology
- Rochester Knighthawks - attending schools to assist with pledges
- Rochester Museum and Science Center
- Rochester Razorsharks
- Rochester Regional Health
- Rochester Rhinos -- Social Media PSA by goal keeper Danny Lynd
- Spencerport High School
State University of NY at Brockport
Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities
- The Bonadio Group
- University of Rochester Medical Center
- WHAT: Pledge Signings and Art display by students from Mary Cariola Children's Center
- WHERE: Cafe 601 at Strong, is located on the first floor of the hospital by the red elevators, 601 Elmwood Ave
- WHEN: 12 - 2:00PM
- WHO: Organized by American Academy of Developmental Medicine and Dentistry (AADMD) student members
- UR media contact: Sean Dobbin - 585-273-2840
- University of Rochester (River Campus)
- WHAT: Pledge Signing Event, Students will be signing the pledge, and can take pictures in a faux-selfie booth, and learn about why the r-word is harmful
- WHERE: University of Rochester River Campus, Wilson Commons
- WHAT: Performances by Vocal Point (all female acapella group), No Jackets Required and Xclusive Step Team
- WHEN: 12pm-2:30pm.
- UR media contact: Sean Dobbin - 585-273-2840
- Eastman Institute for Oral Health
- Pledge signings, Lobby, organized by American Academy of Developmental Medicine and Dentistry (AADMD) student members
- Eastman Media Contact: Karen Black 275-1131 C: 7210647
Warner School of Education
- Wayne High School
- W. Irondequoit High School
- Webster Schroeder High School
- Webster Thomas High School
- WXXI & The Little Theatre
- Rochester Premiere of the film, "Diffability Hollywood," with panel discussion to follow with the filmmaker Adrian Esposito, who is from Rochester and has Asperger's Syndrome, a form of autism; and D&C Film Critic, Jack Garner.
- Diffability Hollywood is a documentary about Hollywood's portrayal of people with disabilities in films throughout history. Theatre 5, 6-8:30 PM, FREE
- YMCA of Greater Rochester - Pledge signings in branch locations and social media campaigns
Friends of the Golisano Foundation that are participating outside Rochester
- Canisius College
- City of Buffalo - Mayor Byron Brown will kick off pledge signings
- Daemon College, Buffalo - organizing pledge events at multiple locations in Buffalo: Spot Coffee, Mr. Bills Coffee (Golisano Clinic), Grateful Grinds, Daily Planet
- Golisano Center for Community Health at Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center
- Golisano Children's Hospital of South West Florida (Lee Health)
- Museum of disABILITY History, Buffalo NY
- Niagara University
- Niagara Falls Catholic (School System)
- Special Olympics NY
- State University of NY at Buffalo - night of Inclusion: games, food and Spread the Word give-aways
- State University of NY Cortland
University at Buffalo
- Upstate Golisano Children's Hospital Syracuse, NY
Video Message from Tom Golisano
o Organize a Pledge Event
and take the pledge, and to get information and resources on how to Spread the word to end the word in schools, companies and organizations.
Email the Foundation with Pledge Activities
About Golisano Foundation
The Golisano Foundation is one of the largest private foundations in the United States devoted exclusively to supporting programs for people with intellectual disabilities. Founded in 1985 with an initial gift of $90,000 from B. Thomas Golisano, the founder and Chairman of Paychex, the Foundation now has more than $36 million in assets and awards about $2 million annually, to non-profit organizations in a multi-county region surrounding Rochester, New York that serve people with developmental disabilities.
The Golisano Foundation is committed to opening doors, changing perceptions, and forging unprecedented partnerships in pursuit of the goal to provide individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities with pathways to self-sufficiency, personal dignity, and the best possible expression of their abilities and talents throughout their lifetimes.
Through our targeted initiatives, it is our vision that communities will encourage and commit to inclusion, acceptance and opportunity for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities; and provide services that empower individuals to make their way productively and creatively in their communities. In addition to providing funding, the Foundation also serves as a proactive partner with organizations that serve people with intellectual disabilities, working together to promote acceptance and inclusion in the community and workplace.
Spread the Word to End the Word
Spread the Word to End the Word was founded in 2009 and is an ongoing effort by Special Olympics (SO), Best Buddies and SO supporters to inspire respect and acceptance through raising the consciousness of society about the R-word and how hurtful words and disrespect can be toward people with intellectual disabilities.The campaign, created by youth, is intended to engage schools and organizations and communities to rally and pledge their support at
and to promote the inclusion and acceptance of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.