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The Coalition for Disabled Hunter Rights

Old 03-21-2003, 08:58 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 13
Default The Coalition for Disabled Hunter Rights

The message below is a Press Release from a new organization called The Coalition for Disabled Hunter Rights. I urge all of you to read the message, and consider joining us in our fight to bring equality to the woods of every state, during every season. The single best way to bring nationwide reform to disabled hunting regulations is to unite disabled hunters from around the country, and focus our efforts.

Please visit our website for more information: www.disabledrights.org or email me via [email protected]

**The Coalition for Disabled Hunter Rights

Press Release: March 21, 2003

A new organization, The Coalition for Disabled Hunter Rights, has been formed to coordinate ongoing efforts of disabled and able-bodied individuals working to achieve equal hunting opportunities for all hunters, in all states, during all hunting seasons. The Coalition' s rapidly growing membership is proof that reform is needed – reform of regulations, reform of allowable equipment, and reform of antiquated opinions regarding disabled hunters.

Today, many states fail to recognize that there are unique requirements created by the diversity of disabilities, resulting in unreasonably complicated and restrictive regulations for disabled hunters. This lack of awareness forces disabled hunters to adopt equipment that does not meet their needs, or to forego hunting in some states. The Coalition believes that decisions about which devices will most safely and efficiently accommodate a disabled hunter' s individual needs should be made by that individual and his or her licensed physician.

The Coalition’s primary goal is to reform disabled archery regulations nationwide to ensure that disabled archers are afforded the opportunity to choose a weapon that best accommodates their needs – this will include the legalization of both crossbows and modified compound bows. Myths regarding crossbow speed, power, and range are often cited in influencing regulations prohibiting their use during archery seasons. In reality, however, the crossbow offers disabled hunters no significant advantages over able-bodied hunters. For many disabled hunters, the crossbow offers the safest, most effective means to hunt as an equal. This weapon accommodates a variety of disabilities while simultaneously maintaining a reasonable essence of the bowhunting heritage. The Coalition believes that opponents of crossbows are misinformed in their belief that disabled crossbowers will “ruin the bow season”.

In addition, the Coalition believes it is imperative that all disabled archer regulations must become flexible enough to allow for equipment adaptation that accommodates individual needs. Should a standard crossbow not accommodate an individual disability, that hunter should be afforded the opportunity to modify his or her archery equipment as needed – this includes the use of Draw-Loc devices, mouth tabs, body braces, and any other reasonable modification.

The Coalition’s secondary goal is to standardize crossbow regulations across all states, as well as bring reform in states where current regulations are unfairly restrictive for disabled hunters – this includes eliminating strictly defined, “no exception” permit eligibility requirements. There are many states where crossbows and modified bows are already legalized, but where permit eligibility requirements are so strict that many disabled are turned away or deterred from applying.

Promoting uniformity among hunters will be an ongoing goal. All hunters, whether able-bodied or disabled, are significantly outnumbered by anti-hunters. The Coalition feels strongly that its education efforts regarding disabled hunters and their unique needs will be valuable in promoting greater understanding, awareness, and unity among hunters -- because only unity will save the hunting heritage.

The Coalition’s first effort will be in West Virginia, where all available remedies within the Americans with Disabilities Act will be used as necessary.

For more information, please visit our web site at www.disabledrights.org

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Old 08-06-2003, 06:31 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 13
Default RE: The Coalition for Disabled Hunter Rights

This post is just an update on the Coalition for Disabled Hunter Rights, and our progress in bringing crossbows to disabled hunters in every state.

To date, Coalition members have filed (or are in the process of filing) ADA Discrimination complaints against the states of West Virginia, New York, and Nevada. We are still waiting to hear an initial response (likely a rejection) from the states of New Mexico, Oregon, and Washington. And soon we will begin the process against Rhode Island, Montana, California, Alaska, and Hawaii. We know for a fact that we have gotten the attention of the US Department of Justice on this issue.

Disabled hunters who want to make a difference in this fight are encouraged to join us in our efforts. It' s never too late for you to start the complaint process against the states we' re targetting.

For more information, please visit our website at www.disabledrights.org

Thank you.
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