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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

U.S. Department of State's EMPOWER Conference on International Disability Inclusion

Notice to the Press
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
October 28, 2013


On Thursday, October 31, Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs Evan M. Ryan and Special Advisor for International Disability Rights Judith E. Heumann will host leaders from 57 organizations participating in the EMPOWER Partnership program, a series of exchanges designed to promote inclusive communities and advance disability rights around the world.

The event will take place in the George C. Marshall Center at the U.S. Department of State at 2 p.m. and will include a discussion with the filmmakers of “Lives Worth Living,” Eric Neudel and Alison Gilkey, followed by a reception and poster show featuring projects of the EMPOWER teams.

The EMPOWER program, which is conducted in partnership with Mobility International USA, American Councils for International Education, Discovering Deaf Worlds, and Global Deaf Connections, has brought an estimated 75 foreign disability rights leaders from every geographic region to the United States and sent approximately 60 American stakeholders abroad.

Participating countries include: Argentina, Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ethiopia, India, Israel, Kenya, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Nigeria, Serbia, Republic of Korea, Tajikistan, Ukraine, and the United States. For a full list of organizations, please visit the EMPOWER Program webpage.

The remarks and reception will be open to the press.

Pre-set time for cameras: 1:15 p.m. from the 21st Street entrance

Final access time for press: 2:00 p.m. from the 21st Street entrance for remarks

4:00p.m. from the 21st Street entrance for reception and poster show

Media representatives may attend this event upon presentation of one of the following: (1) A U.S. Government-issued identification card (Department of State, White House, Congress, Department of Defense or Foreign Press Center), (2) a media-issued photo identification card, or (3) a letter from their employer on letterhead verifying their employment as a journalist, accompanied by an official photo identification card (driver's license, passport).

For further information, please contact Anna Griffin at To learn more about disabilities and U.S. Department of State exchange programs, visit

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PRN: 2013/1302

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