Keep Moving Forward is an interview series featuring people with disabilities sharing perspectives, insights, and experiences produced by Ampers.
The series explores what's better and what needs improvement for people with disabilities since the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Together we keep moving toward full access and inclusion in all aspects of life.
Photo credit: Krish Kiefer
Note: The videos on this page will autoplay on YouTube when opened.
Adonia Kyle: Black People Are Left Out
When it comes to the disability conversation, a ton of people are left out; a lot of those people are black people.
For a long time, I felt invisible to my health care providers. My brain misfires and I have episodes of shaking and stuttering and not being able to speak. Doctors told me, “This is not real.” I finally got an accurate diagnosis when one of them insisted I get the right tests. It should not be such a struggle, but many people like me face it every day.
Jeff Bangsberg: I Found My American Dream
More than 45 years ago, my life changed dramatically when I broke my neck, causing me to have to deal with a severe disability as a young person.
Living at home with a personal care assistant, rather than in a nursing home, allowed me to pursue and fulfill my dream of graduating from college and building a thriving career slowly but surely.
Darlene Zangara: We All Need To Be At The Table
People with hearing loss are twenty percent of the population, but we are often forgotten, overlooked, and left out of important public dialogues and policy decisions.
As the Executive Director for the Minnesota Commission of the Deaf, DeafBlind & Hard of Hearing, I ensure that we are at the table and part of the conversation, so our voices are heard when it comes to important policies that affect all our lives.
Ken Rodgers: Blindness Is Just One Part Of Me
There was a time when people with disabilities were kept behind closed doors. Being seen living my life to the fullest is important to me.
I became blind 30 years ago, at the time, I did not know what being blind would mean for my life. Now, I’m comfortable in my world. It’s important for others to see me taking public transportation, walking downtown, sitting in a restaurant. That’s how I encourage others, by just being “me.”
Sam Jasmine: Persuading Others To “Give Me A Shot”
As a job seeker, I have faced doors shutting and opportunities evaporating even before I had the chance to prove myself, all because I am blind. But I have a strategy.
I have learned how to effectively overcome this by sitting down with a potential employer and having a conversation about their fears. Then I share my fears. This builds a bridge, in place of a closed door.
Sharon Van Winkel: Find Your Passion And Do It!
I lost my job as a computer programmer after a car crash that left me paralyzed from the waist down. Losing my job actually worked out well for me, because it freed me up to pursue wheelchair sports. That led to me being on the USA Women’s Para Olympic Team. I feel good about that.
This work is funded in part by a grant from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund. The Minnesota Historical and Cultural Grants Program is made possible by the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the vote of Minnesotans on November 4, 2008.