People with Disabilities are Entitled to Dignity and Social Justice

A Statement in Opposition to Honoring Dr. Jack Kevorkian


  • All human beings are entitled to dignity and social justice.
  • People with disabilities are human beings.
  • People with disabilities are entitled to dignity and social justice.

and Whereas:

  • The Gleitsman Foundation has presented Dr. Jack Kevorkian with a Citizen Activist Award for challenging “social injustice.”
  • Dr. Kevorkian has actively participated in the deaths of persons with disabilities, both with and without terminal illnesses.
  • Dr. Kevorkian’s actions toward people with disabilities deny them dignity and social justice.


We, the undersigned, call upon the Gleitsman Foundation and all persons associated with the Citizen Activist Award to support the right of people with disabilities to dignity and social justice and to publicly condemn Dr. Kevorkian’s actions.

  • Adrienne Asch, Ph.D.
    Henry R. Luce Professor, Biology, Ethics, and the Politics of Human Reproduction, Wellesley College
  • Rev. Daniel Berrigan
    Also on behalf of the 18 members of the West Side Jesuit Community
  • Jerome and Carol Berrigan
  • Rev. Philip Berrigan
  • Douglas P. Biklen, Ph.D., Professor, Syracuse University
  • Quinn Brisben
    Andrea Brisben
  • Ramsey Clark, Esq.
  • Eli Clare, Author, Exile and Pride: Disability, Queerness, and Liberation
  • Diane Coleman, Founder/President
    Stephen Drake, Research Analyst
    Not Dead Yet
  • Richard Cusack
    Also on behalf of Nancy Cusack, Joan Cusack, and John Cusack
  • Justin Dart
    Justice for All
  • John Dear, S. J.
    Fellowship of Reconciliation
  • Barbara Waxman Fiduccia, Consultant
    Disabled Women’s Health Policy and Programs
  • Thomas Gilhool, Esq.
    Judith Gran, Esq.
    Barbara E. Ransom, Esq.
    Max P. Lapertosa, Esq.
    Lionel A. Dyson, Esq.
    Marinda van Dalen, Esq.
    Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia
  • Lucy Gwin
    Editor, Mouth Magazine, Freedom Clearinghouse
  • Nat Hentoff
  • Stanley S. Herr, Esq., Professor, University of Maryland School of Law
  • John Hockenberry, Author, Moving Violations: War Zones, Wheelchairs, and Declarations of Independence
    Mary Johnson, Editor, Ragged Edge: The Disability Experience in America
  • Deborah Kaplan, Executive Director, World Institute on Disability
  • Janine Bertram Kemp and Tom Olin
    Disability Rights Center
  • Paul Longmore, Ph.D., Professor of History, San Francisco State University
  • Robert Ludwig, Director, University Ministry, DePaul University
  • Janet Schenk McCord, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
    Peter Gathje, Ph.D., Associate Professor
    Christian Brothers University
  • Diane L. Murphy, Ph.D., Director, Women’s Studies, Syracuse University
  • Tom Nerney
    Self-Determination for Persons with Disabilities
  • Robert Perske, Author, Circle of Friends, Unequal Justice, and Deadly Innocence
  • Sr. Helen Prejean, Author, Dead Man Walking: An Eyewitness Account of the Death Penalty in the United States
  • Eric Rosenthal, Esq.
    Mental Disability Rights International
  • Marta Russell, Author, Beyond Ramps: Disability at the End of the Social Contract
  • Kathleen Rumpf
    Jail Ministry
  • Martin Sheen
  • Wesley J. Smith, Author, Final Exit: The Slippery Slope from Assisted Suicide to Legalized Murder
  • Paul W. Spooner, President
    National Council on Independent Living
  • TASH—Disability Advocacy Worldwide
    Steven J. Taylor, Ph.D., Professor and Director
    Elizabeth Wallbridge, Chair, Advocacy Board
    Center on Human Policy, Syracuse University
  • World Association of Persons with Disabilities (WAPD)

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