Did you know that over 1,200 adults with disabilities come to Dumbo Brooklyn every single day to receive support services? While many people are familiar with the League Artist Natural Design Gallery (aka the LAND) on 67 Front Street, not many people realize that it’s a small branch of The League Treatment Center located on 30 Washington Street. Also in the neighborhood is AHRC which has two Dumbo facilities, Dean O’Hare Adult Day Center on 113 Water Street and Stephen B. Siegel Adult Day Center at 18 Adams Street. Additionally, F.E.G.S. is around the corner at 199 Jay Street.
These organizations are united in providing services aimed at one thing, community inclusion. Across the country, programs are working towards “deinstitutionalization” which includes assisting people with disabilities to become full-fledged participants and contributors within their communities. Services frequently include money, social and vocational skills training in natural, everyday settings. People with disabilities shop, dine, visit galleries, volunteer and work – sometimes with staff assistance and sometimes independently.
We spoke with a psychologist who works with the adults with disabilities who provided some simple ways to make Dumbo more disability friendly:
There are three major ways to be more disability friendly. (1) Improve your awareness. Understand the different type of disabilities that exist. Learn how to communicate with people who are nonverbal. Befriend a person with a disability. (2) Two is about disability etiquette, such as when you can touch someone’s wheelchair? Or how do you politely avoid a well-meaning hug? And when is it ok to laugh? (3) Lastly, include people with disabilities in the community. Are you a gallery owner or a retailer in Dumbo? Mail invites to programs, or speak to a program supervisor. If you need volunteers (e.g. mailings, shreddings, set-up), call up one of the programs in the neighborhood.
If you work or live in Dumbo, please reach out to our community of people with disabilities. For more information, contact:
- The League Treatment Center (leaguetreatment.org), 30 Washington St., (718) 643-5300 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- AHRC (ahrcnyc.org), (718) 237-4587 or email email@example.com
- Dean O’Hare Adult Day Center, 113 Water St.
- Stephen B. Siegel Adult Day Center, 18 Adams St.
- F.E.G.S. (fegs.org), 199 Jay St., (Sandra P. and Frederick P. Rose Center) (718) 488-0100 Ext. 346/344 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Related to this, a NY Times story in February, 2009, noted that Two Trees is not renewing the lease held by The League Treatment Center at 30 Washington Street and will expire in November 2010. No word yet on whether they have found a replacement location.