ISAD 2009 – More than a tangled tongue

International Stuttering Awareness Day Oct. 22nd 2009
Stuttering: More than a tangled tongue
People who stutter represent a diverse group of individuals with different occupations, diverse cultural identities, personal experiences and accomplishments. Although over 60 million people stutter, most people actually know very little about stuttering.  This lack of awareness is how come people who stutter may face discrimination, prejudice and at times social isolation.
International Stuttering Awareness Day (ISAD) occurs on October 22nd and is designed to raise awareness about the challenges that people who stutter experience.  ISAD is a joint endeavor by persons who stutter and their families and professionals (educators, researchers and clinicians) interested in stuttering. ISAD provides a framework for building a more humane, just and compassionate world for millions of people who stutter.
ISAD is co-sponsored and recognized by major international stuttering organizations such as International Stuttering Association; the International Fluency Association; European League of Stuttering Associations and American Speech-Hearing Association Division on Fluency and Fluency Disorders as well as national organizations which you can find on the International Stuttering Association website (www.isastutter.org).
This year’s events include the twelfth annual online conference October 1 –22nd found by going to The Stuttering Home Page (www.stutteringhomepage.com) where participants can read papers by consumers and professionals from around the world and interact with the presenters during the three weeks the conference is “live.” Papers remain available online and all past conferences are archived. Other ISAD activities in the past have included people who stutter and professionals hosting an open house, advocating for a proclamation marking ISAD October 22nd or students talking in their class about stuttering.
2009 presents many challenges that face people who stutter such as economic recession, job loss or anxiety about employment or personal fulfillment. It is vital to create a society, in which people who stutter can develop talents, become advocates for better understanding and become active participants in their future. This year in particular there are many conferences or workshops held around the world. It is an opportunity to take personal steps in changing: you can go to www.isastutter.org for a listing of conferences you can attend.
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