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April is Autism Awareness Month

The moment when Selma Blair's service dog seemingly made Biden one of his people

President Joe Biden walks with actress Selma Blair and Blair's service dog Scout as they arrive for an event to celebrate the Americans with Disabilities Act on the South Lawn of the White House on Monday.
Susan Walsh
/
AP
President Joe Biden walks with actress Selma Blair and Blair's service dog Scout as they arrive for an event to celebrate the Americans with Disabilities Act on the South Lawn of the White House on Monday.

President Biden brought an A-list Hollywood star with him to a White House event on Monday to mark the anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act — but it was her service dog who stole the show.

As actress Selma Blair delivered remarks to an audience gathered in the South Lawn, Scout, her English Red Fox Lab, laid down next to her, near President Biden's feet. It didn't take long before Scout got really comfortable. As Blair spoke, Scout gently flopped over, right across Biden's left shoe. The president, a dog owner himself, then looked down as Scout nestled there while Blair finished her speech.

Watch the moment here at around the 2:16 mark:

Blair has been a vocal disability advocate after her multiple sclerosis diagnosis in 2018 at 46 years old. At the event she praised the Americans with Disability Act of 1990 and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

"In my own disability advocacy I have realized that these historic pieces of legislation were vital steps towards fairness but the push towards equity continues," Blair said. "Our laws and policies must reflect that our lives are not of lesser value and in partnership with the disability community the Biden administration is working to do just that – breaking down barriers that exist today in transportation, health care, education, employment, voting and more."

Disabled Americans are still three times less likely to have a job and they often earn less for the same work someone else is doing if they are not disabled.

"For more than 61 million Americans living with disability these laws are a source of opportunity, meaningful inclusion, participation, respect and as my dad would say, the most important of all: dignity, being treated with dignity," Biden said after Blair — and Scout — left the stage. "For our nation, these laws are a testament to our character as a people, a triumph of values over selfishness but of course these laws didn't put an end to the work we need to do."

Blair and Scout became partners in 2021 when she announced on Instagram he was helping her with some mobility issues. In the post, she asked to give Scout some space.

"He is very handsome, and friendly, but if you see me and Scout, and we are working (which he really always is, as am I) then give a smile but please don't approach," Blair wrote.

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