Monday, October 16, 2006

The Long Awaited October ICOIL Meeting.

Indiana Statewide Independent Living Council

Well, here we are again. I know you've all heard how ridiculous the Indiana SILC "Situation" is. Little old Indiana and Its little council that argues with each other. I mean, sure there's plenty of other stuff going on that I'd love to write about. Like UPS getting sued for not hiring the deaf. Or the judge in Florida that threatened to fine the Dept. of Family & Children thousands of dollars a day if they don't find placement for mentally disabled inmates. But here we go again, I'll tell you all about the ICOIL circus that I went to last week.

First off, if you haven't read my post last month about ICOIL then you might want to start there. We left off around the time Jodi James and Ramona Harvey, the ICOIL Chair and secretary, respectively, came back from the ADAPT action in Washington D.C. and found out that the meeting Jodi cancelled happened anyway. So they elected a new pawn person to serve as Chairperson. This woman seen here to the right, Dee Ann Hart, is the new puppet. I almost feel sorry for her. Almost. I knew she would come with strings but I had no idea how many people were pulling them. Let's start with Dave Nelson. Throughout the whole meeting Nelson was very subtly giving Hart commands of what to do next. Covering his mouth and telling her to call a recess, telling her that it's time to watch a video etc. The whole meeting. And like any good servant, she obeyed her master.

The only problem was that James and Harvey were TRYing to read their prepared statements that Dee Ann Hart told them earlier that they would be allowed to do. That must not have gone over too well with Hart's masters because she went back on her word and kept interrupting. And it wasn't just her, The women across the room were ganging up on Harvey and James too! One of the women, Teresa Mager, previously wrote an email to Ramona Harvey, who is a very qualified yet unemployed Hoosier, with a pleasant insult referring to her not having a job. Real nice, Mager.
I bet there's a few people who read this blog that would be surprised to learn that the director of the Wabash Independent Living and Learning Center makes fun of disabled people who don't have jobs.

So anyway, then somebody on the council (probably Dave Nelson) told Dee Ann to take a recess and so she did. Buuuut since she's not the real Chair, the meeting went on sans Hart, Pat Stewart, Mager, Al Tolbert, Melissa Madill and a few others. Fifteen minutes go by, they come back inside but this time the State Police are there! Which, being the ADAPT members we are, doesn't really intimidate anyone. Besides, we weren't doing anything illegal. Unless you count Teresa Torres. She said a curse word. And according to one State Trooper if she didn't watch her language then she was going to jail! HAHA no, seriously, listen to the audio clip HERE.

Jeez, where was I? OK, yea so yelling, more yelling and then some screaming, then some more debate on whether the meeting from last month was legal or if it wasn't. Oh, and at the end of the meeting, Member at Large Emas Bennett, who is an ICOIL colleague and former employee of Teresa Torres, expressed his frustration by very eloquently telling Torres to "Shut your fat ass up." Again, why would I make this stuff up? You can listen to it yourself by clicking HERE. Big words for a man who stole computer property of the CIL he was fired from. And while we're on this subject, why is his wife being paid by ICOIL to be his personal assistant? I mean, Emas is a smart man. He's a very capable man who has achieved a lot in his lifetime. He has also sat on many boards and committees and councils. So why NOW does he all of a sudden need a personal assistant? He's blind. So what? ICOIL supplies everything in alternative format. If anyone has the answer, please, enlighten me. Remember, you can post comments at the bottom of this blog entry.

So I'll leave you all with these questions: Why did ICOIL kick off Jodi James and Ramona Harvey? Why is Dave Nelson giving Keith Coros money. (wait, I can answer that one. He wants his vote.) And most of all, WHY isn't the Council more concerned with the PEOPLE IN INDIANA WITH DISABILITIES than they are with money and power? There is SO much good happening in this country and Indiana is becoming a laughing stock. Shouldn't we be talking about stuff like THIS?

I can't give a complete recap of this meeting without giving props to Indiana and Ohio ADAPT for coming out and supporting our brothers and sisters in this battle. Sure, there were only about 15 or 20 of us, but there's always next month.

If anyone would like to see this meeting, I would recommend you go to the Everybody Counts website. There you can see the meeting in its entirety. They have a version for hi-speed users and one for those of you who use dial-up. Grab your popcorn, it's a good one. And please, leave your comments either here or the forums that Everybody Counts has set up at
So, until next time,


At 2:28 PM, Anonymous The Roving Activist said...

I saw that video, and couldn't finish it. That's how traumatizing it was to me. I had to back away because I was PISSED!! I wish that there was something that I could do to help. Right now, I am in the middle of a move to Rochester, but I wanted to let y'all know that you have my support and best wishes. Hang in there, and don't give up!

Anita from DC


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