Campaign for People with Intellectual Disabilities (Tootsie-Roll)

Chairman Chris Wrobel


Members of the Knights of Columbus do a great deal to assist people with intellectual disabilities. As your council works to improve the quality of life for people with intellectual disabilities, please remember that your everyday speech, council bulletins, committee reports, posters, and flyers should be accurate and considerate when referring to people with disabilities.

DO talk or write about people with intellectual disabilities (do NOT use other terms to describe them).

DO treat adults with intellectual disabilities as adults (NOT as children).

Use positive language. MOST IMPORTANTLY, speak or write about these individuals with the respect all human beings deserve. Keep in mind that how you refer to people can have a great impact on the way others perceive them.

(click here to donate to the Campaign for People with Intellectual Disabilities Fund)

One of the most popular and successful programs conducted by our councils for the benefit of people with intellectual disabilities is when councils collect donations outside stores and churches. In appreciation, the donor is often given a Tootsie Roll. The high visibility of this program has led to the campaign being referred to as the “Tootsie Roll Drive.” The nickname is understandable, but misleading.

The Supreme Council has asked us to remind councils that the Knights of Columbus has no official tie to Tootsie Rolls or their manufacturer. In fact, many councils participate in this same fundraising drive, but distribute other items. References to this program should highlight the good the money does, not advertise a candy. For these reasons, it is strongly recommended that this project be promoted as the “Campaign for People with Intellectual Disabilities” rather than the “Tootsie Roll Drive.”

Under the Documents list on the right, you will find Posters that can be downloaded, and also a “Presentation Check” that you can use for publicity photos. You can also find the form to order Tootsie Rolls

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