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October 2022

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Creating Accessible and

Inclusive Communities

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Peer Group events are being held both

in-person and virtually. A complete list of all peer group events can be found at www.dnmm.org/virtualpeer.

Click here to view the peer group event calendar.


Disability Network of Mid-Michigan announced its participation in National Disability Employment Awareness Month, an annual awareness campaign that takes place each October. The purpose of National Disability Employment Awareness Month is to educate about disability employment issues and celebrate the many and varied contributions of America's workers with disabilities. This year's theme is "Disability: Part of the Equity Equation.”


“A strong workforce is the sum of many parts, and disability has always been a key part of the equation,” said DNMM Executive Director Kelly PeLong. “People with disabilities make up a wonderfully multifaceted group. By recognizing the full complexion of our community, we can ensure our efforts to achieve disability inclusion are, in fact, truly inclusive.”

National Disability Employment Awareness Month official poster with theme Disability Part of the Equity Equation. Shows pictures of workers with disabilities with a plus sign between them, followed by an equals sign and then a lit up lightbulb as the equation's solution

Throughout October DNMM will be engaging in a variety of online activities promoting community awareness on disability employment and cultural issues:

  • October 12 – Noon-1pm – “People with Disabilities in the Workplace” featuring Gary Holik of Michigan Rehabilitation Services
  • October 26 – Noon-1pm – “What is Disability Culture?” featuring a panel discussion with community members with disabilities
  • October 27 – 7pm – Film screening of the award-winning documentary “Crip Camp”


“We are proud to be a part of this year's National Disability Employment Awareness Month," added PeLong. "We want to spread the important message that a strong workforce is one inclusive of the skills and talents of all individuals, including individuals with disabilities."


Employers and employees in all industries can learn more about how to participate in National Disability Employment Awareness Month and ways they can promote its messages — during October and throughout the year — by visiting the ODEP website at www.dol.gov/odep.

wheelchair user in office setting at conference table with multiple colleagues

"People With Disabilities In The Workplace"

Live on Zoom

Wednesday, October 12

Noon - 1pm

To participate, copy and paste the Zoom link below or visit dnmm.org/events to download a meeting invite directly to your Outlook Calendar.


"What Is Disability Culture?"

Live on Zoom

Wednesday, October 26

Noon - 1pm

To participate, copy and paste the Zoom link below or visit dnmm.org/events to download a meeting invite directly to your Outlook Calendar.


various images for crip camp documentary featuring a summer camp for people with disabilities that led to greater advocacy and helped groom leaders of the disability rights movement

"Crip Camp: A Free Screening"

Live on Zoom

Thursday, October 27

7pm - 9pm

To participate, copy and paste the Zoom link below or visit dnmm.org/events to download a meeting invite directly to your Outlook Calendar.




Your Vote Matters!

Join us Monday, October 24, at 6:00pm for an opportunity to hear directly from candidates seeking election to represent areas of Saginaw County. The event will be held live on Zoom.

DNMM will ask 2-3 questions of each candidate allowing responses of not more than 2 minutes.

The invited candidates will be seeking the following offices:

  • Governor, Secretary of State, Attorney General
  • US Congress (8th District)
  • State Senate (26th, 34th, and 35th Districts)
  • State Representative (71st, 93rd, 94th, 97th Districts)

Election day is Tuesday, November 8th. Make sure your voice is heard!

To participate, copy and paste the Zoom link below or visit dnmm.org/events to download a meeting invite directly to your Outlook Calendar.



mother and daughter going over emergency plan

This past week, Hurricane Ian reminded us of the importance of planning for emergencies.

Are you prepared to handle an emergency situation? Do you have a plan?

After the devastating floods in May of 2020, many Michigan residents faced the difficult challenge of trying to put the pieces of their lives back together. Many found themselves in the position of not having a plan for dealing with such an emergency. 

DNMM is excited to once again offer MY3P (My Personal Protection Plan) - an emergency preparedness series that will help you Make a Plan, Build a Kit, and Be Informed.

Upcoming session dates and topics are:

  • Part One - October 20 - 1:00-3:00pm

           Creating My Action Plans and Support Network

  • Part Two - October 27 - 1:00-3:00pm

           Creating My Go Kit and Evacuation Plan

           Assistive Technology For Your Go Kit

  • Part Three - November 3 - 1:00-3:00pm

           Advanced Care Directives

           Personal Safety

All sessions are FREE of charge and will be conducted virtually on Zoom. Participants will be given flash drives with all the essential resources to customize their plan.

Class size is limited.

Click Here To Register
my 3 p  personal protection plan logo with green checkmark


young boy smiling clinging to book in front of tree with red-orange leaves

Not all disabilities can be seen. One of the more common hidden disabilities is dyslexia.

Dyslexia is one of the most common language-based learning disabilities. Between 5-10% of the population is estimated to have dyslexia while 70-80% of those with reading difficulties are likely to have some form of dyslexia. This month, students and educators across the nation are raising awareness about the struggles associated with dyslexia.

Here are 4 ideas for ways that you can promote Positive Dyslexia Awareness this month.

1. Tell a Peer. If you’re a parent, tell a parent. If you’re a student, tell a student. If you're a corporate exec, tell a corporate exec. Positive dyslexia awareness is needed at all levels of society and in many cases, the message comes through stronger if you’re educating someone who is a lot like you.

2. Tell a Change Maker. Change makers come in all different types but include teachers, tutors, therapists, legislators, and university professors. If you help a change maker develop a positive awareness of dyslexia and the need to change, their actions and work can have positive ripples on many more students and families.

3. Tell a Child. Children should grow up with a positive awareness of who they are and their potential. So many adults have told us that a turning point happened when they started seeing themselves in a positive way. Find a video or a book that talks about the positive side of dyslexia and let a child know what you find amazing that they can do.

4. Share Resources.  Share what you learn and don’t worry about what you don’t know. Point out websites, books, and materials. Look for materials that mention strengths associated with dyslexia as well as the challenges to help them get a balanced view of dyslexia from the start. Don’t forget Facebook or other social media where a ‘like’ or a short comment can get a friend on a positive path to discovery.

Video file first in a series of 3 videos about dyslexia


DNMM is proud to once again be a small part of the return of hockey to our region as a sponsor of accessible seating at the Dow Event Center. We look forward to working with the center and the Saginaw Spirit toward making hockey games and other events fully accessible.

Throughout the 2022-2023 season, we'll often have a resource table out in the main concourse. We'd love to see you. Come on out and enjoy a game with us! Catch the Spirit!

Click Here For A Game Schedule


large crowd gathered outside new office space in bay city

In order to better serve the needs of mid-Michigan area residents, DNMM has recently opened offices in Alma, Bay City, Gladwin, and Saginaw.

“We are excited and eager for this new opportunity to serve our communities, said DNMM Executive Director Kelly PeLong. "The pandemic has demonstrated that the need for services is greater than ever as people with disabilities face isolation in addition to challenges finding employment and accessible, affordable housing, and accessing transportation, education, and community resources."

“As we seek to address these needs, we have increased staff in several key program areas and we have expanded our outreach efforts to more isolated communities. Opening office spaces in these cities affords us the opportunity to meet, locally and in-person, with individuals and families from Bay, Gladwin, Gratiot, and Saginaw counties, as well as the surrounding area.

The new offices are located at:

BAY - 266 Uptown, Bay City 48708

GLADWIN - 490 Industrial Dr., Gladwin 48624

GRATIOT - 525 N. State St., Suite 219, Alma 48801

SAGINAW - 1605 Concentric Blvd., Suite 1, Saginaw 48604

Please call 989-835-4041 for office hours or to schedule an appointment. We look forward to meeting you!


feathers and fedoras event logo man and woman in 20s garb looking at each other



Inclusion is a universal human right for all people, regardless of race, age, gender, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or any other discernible quality. To be inclusive is to promote a sense of belonging, respect, and value for who you are as a person. It is about equal access and opportunities for everyone. Inclusion is an integral part of our Independent Living philosophy and of our agency's vision of accessible and inclusive communities.

DNMM offices have been, and continue to be, places of solace, understanding, and information for all. We are committed to promoting and protecting diversity and inclusion, within our offices, among our community partners, and throughout the 15 Centers for Independent Living in Michigan.

people of various ethnicities and abilities


DNMM advocates for the removal of barriers to independence and full inclusion of people with disabilities throughout the Mid-Michigan area. DNMM pledges to ensure accessibility. Each year, DNMM conducts a review of its own architectural, environmental, attitudinal, employment, communication, transportation, and other barriers that may exist which prohibit full access to our services.

If you have any issues of concern regarding the accessibility of DNMM services and facilities, we encourage you to share that information.

Please click here to contact us.

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map of michigan with service area counties selected: alcona, arenac, bay, clare, gladwin, gratiot, iosco, isabella, midland, ogemaw, roscommon, and saginaw


989-835-4041 | dnmm.org

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