Sadly for Haley, the Navy recommended that she be “separated” (dismissed) from the Academy, despite the fact that she was a varsity rower on the school’s crew team and had above-average grades.
Feeling that she was being treated unfairly, just because she has diabetes, Haley reached out to the American Diabetes Association for help.
With the help of the Association’s Legal Advocacy program, Haley learned about her rights. And she refused to take “no” for an answer. Along with support from her parents, friends and coaches, Haley fought through medical boards to stay at the Naval Academy.
As a result, Haley was able to stay in school and achieve her dream of graduating from the Naval Academy with the Class of 2014.
Unfortunately, the Navy wouldn’t commission Haley because she has diabetes. That meant that she could not pursue the next part of her dream: to serve her country as a U.S. Navy Pilot.
A New Path
Instead, she had to take a different, but still exciting, path. Haley now works as an independent contractor for the U.S. Naval Academy, on a NASA-funded project that is headed to the International Space Station in 2016.
“The support I received from the American Diabetes Association gave me confidence to fight for what I believed in,” says Haley. “I couldn’t let go of the Naval Academy; I had worked so hard to get there and made so many lifelong friends. The thought of being kicked out for having type 1 diabetes, something beyond my control, was heartbreaking. It just wasn’t an option.”
The American Diabetes Association leads the effort to prevent and eliminate discrimination against people with diabetes at school, at work and in other parts of daily life. If you need help, call 1-800-DIABETES or visit http://diabetes.org/gethelp.
Give the gift of fairness — donate now to help people with diabetes facing discrimination, just like Haley: