WYSO

Just Ask: talking About Disability

40-year-old Heather Reese and her mother, Sue, in Dayton.
Basim Blunt / WYSO

In this latest installment from our summer series Just Ask: Talking About Disability, WYSO's April Laissle introduces us to 40-year-old Heather Reese, who has Down syndrome, a heart defect known as mitral regurgitation, or MR, and a visual impairment. Heather leads Laissle on a tour of United Rehabilitation Services in Dayton, where she works. And we meet Heather’s mom, Sue, who also works at URS.

Some highlights from this story include:

Just Ask: Susan Koller And Tom Webb Talk Job Discrimination

Aug 17, 2017
People with disabilities say many work environments aren’t set up to accommodate disabilities. This is an additional challenge for people with mobility issues in the workplace, who often need special software or other assistive technology.
Basim Blunt / WYSO

In this installment from our series Just Ask: Talking About Disability,  we explore the issue of employment discrimination and access. WYSO producer Anna Lurie introduces us to Susan Koller and Tom Webb, who both have cerebral palsy. They say many work environments aren’t set up to accommodate people with disabilities. And many people with mobility issues in the workplace also need special software or other assistive technology.

Unemployment Rate For People Age 16 to 64, with and without disabilities
National Center for Family & Demographic Research, Bowling Green State University / WYSO

All this month, WYSO is bringing you stories of Ohioans living with disabilities. It’s a series we’re calling Just Ask: Talking About Disability. In an effort to better understand the issue of disabilities in Ohio, we collaborated with researchers from the National Center for Family and Demographic Research at Bowling Green State University, who analyzed statistics from the 2015 five-year American Community Survey.

Darrell Dean
Basim Blunt / WYSO

In this installment from our series Just Ask: Talking About Disability, we hear from Darrell Dean, who works at a disability services organization in Dayton. Darrell is 45, and was diagnosed with Spina Bifida at birth. As WYSO’s April Laissle explains, at first, Darrell struggled to find a job after he graduated from high school.

Highlights from the interview include:

"There's nothing I can do about my disability. I've got it, you know. So I have to live with it. It doesn't bother me or anything. I just cope with it and go on.”

Robert Sabwami, 41, tells us about his experience growing up in Kenya with a visual impairment.
Basim Blunt / WYSO

In this installment from our series Just Ask: Talking About Disability, we hear from 41-year-old Robert Sabwami, who recalls his experience growing up in Kenya with a visual impairment. 

In this story produced by WYSO's April Laissle, he says his journey hasn’t always been easy. When Robert first started losing his vision, he was plunged into isolation.

Highlights from this interview include: 

Michaela Feeser
Basim Blunt / WYSO

In this installment from our series Just Ask: Talking About Disability, we explore the topic of caregiving. Many people with disabilities in the Miami Valley rely on aides, who help with day-to-day tasks. 

Here, WYSO producer April Laissle introduces us to 24-year-old Michaela Feeser from Dayton, who has cerebral palsy. She explains what it feels like to clash with an aide you depend on everyday. 

Highlights from this interview include:  

Todd Corthell and Lateef Brown
Basim Blunt / WYSO

Lateef Brown and Todd Corthell both suffered a traumatic brain injury in their twenties, and both are still grappling with recovery, decades later. In this audio story from our series, Just Ask: Talking About Disability, Lateef and Todd share their personal recovery journeys, and talk about how their lives have changed since their injuries. 

Highlights from this interview include: 

Jerry Kenney

Approximately 30,000 people use the Greater Dayton Regional Transit system every day. RTA officials say 21 percent of those riders have a disability.

In an effort to better serve that population, RTA requires new drivers to complete an immersive, day-long training led by people with disabilities, and designed to give bus drivers personal insight into what many passengers with disabilities experience in their daily commutes.

The most recent training session took place in late June at the Access Center for Independent Living in Dayton.

Access Center Dayton Access Center for Independent Living
Jess Mador / WYSO

July marks nearly three decades since President George H.W. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act into law, making it the nation's first comprehensive civil rights legislation designed to protect people with physical and cognitive disabilities.

All this month, WYSO is bringing you stories of Ohioans living with disabilities. It’s a series we’re calling Just Ask: Talking About Disability.