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Nonprofit news roundup for June 4, 2008

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People with disabilities turn to ‘self advocacy’

People with autistic-spectrum disorders are learning to advocate for themselves through the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network, which, like other disability groups, aims to push the notion of “nothing about us without us,” NPR reported June 2.  Ari Ne’eman, a 20-year old with Asperger’s and the president of the network, says people with autism are not disabled by their disorder, but by prejudices and societal systems that do not meet the needs of all people.

Economic downturn affecting pets

The effects of skyrocketing food and fuel prices are beginning to trickle down to pets as owners struggling to make ends meet are finding it difficult to feed themselves and their animals, the Baltimore Sun reported June 3.  While some have been forced to surrender their pets to shelters, others are relying on food pantries, some of which have begun stocking pet food, to keep their animals at home.

Aid groups urge Myanmar to keep shelters open

International-aid groups are urging Myanmar to keep open the camps set up to house refugees in the wake of cyclone Cyclone Nargis, which killed more than 100,000 and left another 2.4 million destitute, Reuters Canada reported June 3.  In spite of criticism from the U.N. and human-rights groups, the government has begun forcing people to leave shelters, a move that could further hamper international-relief efforts.

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