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Access Press exists to promote the social inclusion and legal rights of people with disabilities by providing a forum for news, features, opinion and conversation to benefit people who are often invisible and marginalized in mainstream society.
To be the predominant source of independent, comprehensive information that enlightens, empowers and improves the quality of life of people living with or associated with all forms of disability throughout the upper Midwest.
- We believe in our roles as catalyst for discussion of critical issues facing disability communities.
- We campaign for full integration of people with disabilities in all areas of life.
- We persist in demonstrating the power of people with disabilities and their allies.
- We galvanize alliances between and amongst disability communities, knowing these associations serve a greater good.
- We share a desire to educate the non-disabled about issues of importance to disability communities in an effort to promote awareness and systems change.
- We strive for a mutually beneficial relationship with organizations and businesses serving disability communities.
Access Press, Ltd. is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization dedicated to serving people with disabilities by publishing disability-related news and information. Located in St. Paul, Minnesota, it is one of only twelve disability-focused newspapers published in the United States. Access Press is funded through individual contributions, subscriptions and paid advertising along with grants from numerous businesses and organizations.
The first issue of Access Press was published in May 1990. Since that first edition, the paper has been published continuously on the 10th of each month.
Each month, Access Press prints over 11,000 copies which are currently distributed to:
Approximately 300+ Minneapolis-St. Paul Metro locations in bundles of 25 to 100 copies. Nine other Minnesota and North Dakota city locations including Duluth, East Grand Forks, Fargo, Hibbing, Mankato, Marshall, St. Cloud and Willmar.
- Approximately 550 subscribers monthly at home or office
- Meetings and special events by friends of Access Press
Because readers routinely share copies of the paper, the total Access Press readership is much larger than it seems, and is not clearly determined by one solid number.
In addition to the printed publication, the paper is produced in audiotape format using a special radio channel for people with visual impairments. The articles from each edition are also posted on the Access Press website at our main page.
Managing Editor – Jane McClure
Transition Team – Jane Larson, Kay Willshire, Bethany Gladhill
Cartoonist – Scott Adams
Columnist/Staff Writer – Tim Benjamin
Production – In-Fin Tuan
Co-Founder/Publisher (1990 – 1996)- Wm. A. Smith, Jr.
Co-Founder, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief (1990 – 2001) Charles F. Smith
Executive Director and Editor-in-Chief (2001-2020) – Tim Benjamin
Board of Directors
Kay Willshire – President
Mohamed Alfash – Vice President
Jane Larson – Treasurer
Brigid Alseth – Secretary
John Lewis Clark