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Speakers & Conferences

Sponsored speakers from diverse backgrounds allow student the opportunity to interact attorneys, advocates, and academics who approach disability from various perspectives.

Past Speakers and Conferences

Video Conference Series

2006-2007 Video Conference Class Series with York University in Canada
Video conference classes provide an opportunity for SU students to participate in classes with students from other disability studies programs in other countries. Our first classes have included York University in Toronto, Canada and University College in Dublin, Ireland. A series of video conference classes are planned for the 2006-07 academic year with disability studies programs in Australia, Israel, and other countries in coming years.

Continuing Legal Education

2005-2006 Continuing Legal Education This year Professor Arlene Kanter and joint degree student Cindy Smith developed a Continuing Legal Education (CLE) disability law course, entitled Disability Discrimination Laws: An Overview for Lawyers. This CLE will be presented to the Onondaga County Bar Association in 2006-07.

Spencer Phillips, Esq.
October 26, 2006

Spencer Phillips was the first recipient of the Hanna S. Cohn Fellowship in Rochester, N.Y., and chose to focus on the legal needs of Rochester's deaf and hard-of-hearing population.  His project included outreach, community education and direct legal assistance in the areas of employment, housing, disability rights, education and civil rights.  Now at Nixon Peabody, LLP, Phillips concentrates his practice on labor and employment law counseling and litigation.

Harriet McBryde Johnson, Esq.
October 4, 2006

Harriet McBryde Johnson is an accomplished civil rights attorney and activist.  She has practiced law in Charleston, South Carolina, for over 13 years with an emphasis on benefits and civil rights claims for people with disabilities.  She is a regular contributor to the New York Times Magazine and to the disability press, and is the author of the books Too Late to Die Young and Accidents of Nature.

2005-2006 Defining, Regulating, and Resisting Normalcy - Brown Bag Luncheon Series

Sponsored by the Disability Law and Policy Program School of Education College of Human Services and Health Professions Marriage and Family Therapy Program, the Beyond Compliance Coordinating Committee and the disAbility Law Society.

This year’s highly successful interdisciplinary Brown Bag Luncheon series was brought together faculty and students from various disciplines from various colleges as well as members of the Central New York community. The purpose of these Brown Bags was to discuss how society defines and regulates normalcy and what strategies exist to resist such classifications. Each Brown Bag was full to capacity, with standing-room only available. The Brown Bags were free and open to the public. Sign language interpreters and CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) services also were provided as well.

The concept of class, race, disability, sexuality, and other identity constructs were explored through the following topic areas:

Theorizing Normalcy, Oct. 12, 2005
Beth Ferri (Education)
Paula Johnson (Law)

Regulating Sexual Pleasure, Nov. 9, 2005
Linda Stone Fish (Marriage & Family Therapy)
Elizabeth Payne (Education)
Wan-Yi Chen (Social Work)
Jackie Orr (Sociology)

Choosing” an Identity, Feb. 1, 2006
Barbara Applebaum (Education)
Minnie-Bruce Pratt (Women’s Studies)
Michael Schwartz (Law)

Space, Place, and Images of Normalcy, March 22, 2006 
Sari Knopp Biklen (Education)
Jeff Mangram (Education)
Don Mitchell (Geography)
Mark Robbins (Dean, School of Architecture)

Resisting Normalcy, April 5, 2006
Matthew Barkley (ARISE)
Kevin Maillard (Law)
Mark Stern (CFE)     

April 21-22, 2006 Inclusion Imperative Conference
Sheraton Hotel 
The Center on Human Policy, Law, and Disability Studies as well as the College of Law Disability Law and Policy Program co-sponsored the Imperative Conference at the Sheraton in Syracuse. This national conference was attended by over 350 people. Center faculty and affiliates presented at the conference, including the following:

Steve Taylor: The Cycle of Exposes and Reforms of Institutions
Arlene Kanter: International Perspectives on Inclusion and Equality
Michael Schwartz: Deaf Patients Talk to Their Doctors: A Sign of Competence
Beth Ferri: Pimp or “Gimp?” Explorations of Race and Disability in Lynn Manning’s “Weights”
Julie Morse: Real Homes, Not Institutions
Douglas Biklen: Autism and the Myth of the Person Alone: “Mountains of Practical Moment”
Mara Sapon-Shevin: Building an Inclusive Classroom Through Children’s Literature and Music/I>
Nicole DeClouette: Popular People Do Homework
Plenary Presentations by John Hockenberry, author of Moving Violations: War Zones, Wheelchairs and Declarations of Independence, and Simi Linton, author of Claiming Disability and My Body Politic.

2005-2006 4th Annual Film Series Beyond Borders: The Illusion of Normalcy in Film
This year’s 2005-2006 film series was the 4th film series, co-sponsored by Beyond Compliance Coordinating Committee (BCCC), the disAbility Law Society (dLS) and the Center on Human Policy, Law, and Disability Studies. This year’s film series related to the Brown Bag Luncheon Series theme of normalcy by challenging the “illusion of normalcy” and encouraging people to re-examine the perceived borders that work to set us apart through discussions regarding the historical, societal, cultural, and media strategies that protect and concede to the idea of “normalcy.” Sign language interpreters and film narration were provided.

Films and Speakers:

Million Dollar Baby
The Hours
The Station Agent
Elephant Man
N.E.P.A.L. - Never Ending Peace and Love, introduced by Norman Kunc, an internationally known Canadian Disability RightActivist
My Classic Life as an Artist: A Portrait of Larry Bissonnette, introduced by Larry Bissonnette, an artist from Vermont who has the label of autism,