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Courage Center Presents 2008 National Courage Award to Congressman Jim Ramstad

2008-07-17 13:57:00

    MINNEAPOLIS, July 17 /EMWNews/ -- Minnesota-based Courage Center

will present Congressman Jim Ramstad with its National Courage Award,

recognizing an individual's contributions to the health, welfare and

rehabilitation of people with disabilities. The award will be presented

during the Medtronic Celebration of Courage Gala on Saturday, Sept. 13,

2008 at The Depot in Minneapolis.


    "Issues facing the disability community have been a long-standing key

policy area for Jim Ramstad," said Courage Center CEO Jan Malcolm. "We are

thrilled to recognize and honor Congressman Ramstad's bi-partisan

leadership in this area."

    As a Minnesota state legislator, Ramstad sponsored funding for a pilot

program that eventually became the Metro Mobility paratransit service.

Today, Metro Mobility provides transportation for 20,000 people with

disabilities in the seven-county Twin Cities metro area. He was also the

sponsor and legislative champion for Minnesota's in-home personal care

assistant program, which gave every qualifying person with a disability the

right to in-home care under the state's Medicaid program, making Minnesota

one of the first states to make such a program entitlement.

    In 1999, as a Congressman for Minnesota's Third District, he

co-sponsored the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act, the

last major federal law to pass benefiting people with disabilities. This

act gives people searching for employment more control in choosing where

they can go for assistance. It also expanded access to Medicare, even in

the event of a job loss. For millions of Americans with disabilities, lack

of adequate health insurance coverage remains a significant barrier to


    Ramstad also cosponsored, along with Senator Paul Wellstone, the Mental

Health Parity Act. He continues to work on the bill's passage, which would

require most group health plans to provide coverage for treatment of mental

illnesses, comparable to what they provide for physical illnesses.

    "Time and again Congressman Ramstad has reached across the aisle to

work on behalf of Americans looking to gain greater independence and

participate fully in life. His passionate and tireless work has made

Minnesota a leader in the areas of access and mental health reform. We are

grateful for his friendship and leadership," said Malcolm.

    About the National Courage Award

    Since 1980, Courage Center has recognized individuals, who through

either personal or professional achievements have made significant

contributions to the disability community. Previous National Courage Award

winners include Janet Reno, journalist John Hockenberry, Christopher Reeve

and designer Michael Graves.

    About Courage Center

    Courage Center is a nonprofit rehabilitation and resource center that

advances the lives of children and adults experiencing barriers to health

and independence. At Courage Center, we specialize in treating brain

injury, spinal cord injury, stroke, chronic pain, autism, and disabilities

experienced since birth. Founded in 1928, Minneapolis-based Courage Center

offers advanced technologies and innovation provided in part through the

efforts of thousands of volunteers and donors. For more information visit

    Contact: Amy Dillahunt, marketing and communications, Courage Center,


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