October is National Down Syndrome Awareness Month

Nicole Adler, a young woman with Down syndrome, is sitting on a patio smiling.

To kick off National Down Syndrome Awareness Month, Nicole Adler has taped an inspiring message that she hopes will shift people’s perceptions about having Down syndrome.  Nicole is a motivational speaker, equal rights advocate and a Governor appointed Councilmember for the State Council on Developmental Disabilities.  

“I don’t want my medical condition to define who I am as a person,” Nicole said. “I am just like you! I am human. I have feelings.  I have emotions.  I want to love and be loved.  I want to feel valued, accepted and included in my community.”

Trisomy 21, also called Down syndrome, is a condition in which a person is born with an extra chromosome.  Nicole believes that our identity should not be hinged on our medical condition. “When you introduce yourself to someone, do you typically tell people your medical history?” Nicole added. “There is diversity in every part of our existence…from plants to animals. There are no two people alike.  It’s our uniqueness that is beautiful and should be celebrated.”

Researchers estimated that in about 1 out of every 1,200 people (children, teens, and adults) living in the United States had Down syndrome, or more than 400,000 nationally.

We applaud Nicole’s perspective on shifting the narrative for people with Down syndrome, and seeing each person for who they are, and prioritizing diversity in our classrooms, neighborhoods, and workplaces.

For NDSM, we encourage you to share your perspective, and continue the dialogue to educate and increase awareness for people with Down syndrome.

WATCH VIDEO: https://specialspeakernicole.com/media 

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