Senate, Comcast join forces for Michigan Mobility & Accessibility Partnership
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
LANSING — State lawmakers, Comcast Cable officials and disability advocates from around the state have joined forces to create the “Michigan Mobility & Accessibility Partnership” (MMAP) to help improve wheelchair accessibility for Michigan families.
“This is a truly collaborative effort between the Legislature, Comcast, volunteers and local Centers for Independent Living,” said Sen. Mark C. Jansen, R-Gaines Township. “By building wheelchair-accessible ramps for families in need, we are helping those families stay together in their own homes – that’s something you cannot put a value on.”
The bipartisan group, chaired in the Senate by Jansen, plans to build four wheelchair-accessible ramps this summer for Michigan families in need. Other Senate participants include Sen. John Gleason, D-Flushing; Sen. Randy Richardville, R-Monroe; and Sen. Gretchen Whitmer, D-East Lansing.
Comcast has committed $25,000 in funding for construction of the ramps, as well as volunteers to assist with the ramp-building projects at each location. Today’s announcement supports Comcast’s long-standing history of giving back to the communities it serves, and builds upon a successful 2009 Comcast Cares Day this past April, when approximately 2,400 volunteers dedicated more than 11,000 hours of community service to local nonprofit organizations across Michigan. Held annually, Comcast Cares Day is one of the largest single-day corporate volunteer efforts in the country.
“Comcast cultivates and celebrates opportunities to give back to Michigan communities in which our employees and our customers live and work,” said Senior Vice President for Comcast’s Michigan Region, Tom Coughlin. “Our company is pleased to help make a difference in the lives of these deserving families by participating in MMAP’s summer wheelchair ramp program.”
The ramp builds are scheduled for:
Monday, July 6
Monday, Aug. 3
Friday, Aug. 7
• Capital Area
Monday, Aug. 17
“People who use mobility aids such as wheelchairs and scooters can have barrier-free access to their own residence for the cost of a month’s stay in a nursing home,” said Jocelyn Dettloff, Disability Advocates of Kent County development director. “I’d like to thank Senator Jansen and Comcast for helping to make this worthwhile program happen, because mobility and accessibility are critical issues for many Michigan families.”
According to a May 2002 report, titled Wheelchair Use in the United States, the Disability Statistics Center at the University of California, San Francisco stated that “an estimated 1.6 million Americans residing outside of assisted living facilities use wheelchairs.”
Wheelchair users are among the most visible members of the disability community. They also experience among the highest levels of limitation in activities, functionality and basic life skills.
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