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Lifelong Access Celebrates: Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month

March is Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month! Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month has been celebrated each year since 1987 with the purpose of raising awareness about the inclusion of people with developmental disabilities. It is a great time to celebrate achievements that have been made by and for people with developmental disabilities as well as to recognize that there are still barriers that are being faced every day by the people in these communities.


The CDC defines developmental disability as “a group of conditions due to an impairment in physical, learning, language, or behavior areas. These conditions begin during the developmental period, may impact day-to-day functioning, and usually last throughout a person’s lifetime.” 


Check out the work of these 3 activists who provide insight into what it’s like living with a developmental disability:


Mel Baggs (sie/hir)

Mel Baggs was an activist blogger with autism. Sie used hir platform to provide awareness to topics such as medical ableism, the culture of autism, and more. Baggs passed away in 2020 at age 39, but hir legacy lives through the work sie published that continues to inspire every day. “I care a lot more about being a human than I care about what categories I fit into,” (Baggs).


Read Mel’s blogs: Mel Baggs | Ballastexistenz (



Imani Barbarin (she/her)

Imani Barbarin is a disability rights and inclusion activist who has Cerebral Palsy. She has social media accounts across several platforms and runs a blog, Crutches and Spice, to share her thoughts and experiences of being a disabled Black woman. In doing so, she hopes to connect with others and inspire her community.


Read Imani’s blogs: Crutches and Spice – Disabled. Loud. Proud


Alan Carrigan (he/him)

Alan Carrigan is a YouTuber who runs two channels, The Disabled Gamer and Alan's Accessible Adventure. Carrigan has Quadriplegic Cerebral Palsy and uses his time to educate others and challenge the way people perceive disability. In his TEDx talk, Impaired by Birth, Disabled by Perception, Carrigan projects the quote, “Don’t let the fear of perception hold you back from doing the things that could change your life.”


Watch Alan’s Ted Talk: 



Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month – NACDD

Facts About Developmental Disabilities | CDC

12 Disability Activists You Should Know (and Follow!) (


About the author: Lauryn Raff is a Marketing Assistant at Lifelong Access. She is also a senior undergraduate student at Illinois State University obtaining a Bachelor's degree in Integrated Marketing Communications. Lauryn has a passion for all things creative and hopes to use this quality along with her dedicated studies to make the world a better place. 


The views expressed are Lauryn's and do not necessarily represent the official views of Lifelong Access.

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