Proclamation 5683 -- International Special Olympics Week and Day, 1987

July 20, 1987

By the President of the United States

of America

A Proclamation

The 1987 VII International Summer Special Olympic Games, to be held from July 31 to August 8 at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana, will host 6,000 athletes, 15,000 volunteers, and thousands of guests from around the United States and the world. Every American can be grateful for the many dedicated and selfless organizers of these games, the largest worldwide amateur sporting event of the year.

We can also be grateful indeed for the entire program of Special Olympics. Its comprehensive local as well as national programs foster self-challenge and discovery and help the physically and mentally impaired form a healthy self-image, develop positive interpersonal skills and relationships, and realize all they have to offer. Special Olympics is one of several advances -- along with recent progress in scientific and medical research and increased integration of handicapped and developmentally disabled people into the workplace -- that have led to a dramatic change in public perception of the capabilities of this important segment of our population. That is truly cause for celebration, at this Special Olympiad and always.

The pride and good wishes of every American go with the special athletes of Special Olympics, now and always.

The Congress, by Senate Joint Resolution 85, has designated the period beginning August 2, 1987, and ending August 8, 1987, as ``International Special Olympics Week,'' and August 3, 1987, as ``International Special Olympics Day,'' and authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of these events.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the period beginning August 2, 1987, and ending August 8, 1987, as International Special Olympics Week, and August 3 as International Special Olympics Day. I invite all Americans to observe this period with appropriate ceremonies and activities directed toward increasing public awareness of the needs and the potential of people with handicapping conditions and developmental disabilities. I further urge all Americans to join with me in according our fellow citizens with such disabilities the encouragement and opportunities they need to achieve their full potential.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this 20th day of July, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-seven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and twelfth.

Ronald Reagan

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 12:48 p.m., July 21, 1987]