Newsletter: July 17, 2013

Northeast ADA Center News Bulletin - Boletín de Noticias del Centro del ADA del Noreste - July 17, 2013


See our Special Spotlight for more!

What's New from the Northeast ADA Center (NEADA):

NEADA Center Seeks Pictures to Highlight Our Region!

July is the month we celebrate our country's independence and the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a law which symbolizes the independence all people with disabilities want and deserve. The NEADA Center wishes to celebrate and profile the lives, independence, and empowerment of our constituents throughout New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. We would like to invite you to email us pictures you have that illustrate living life as a person with a disability. They could be pictures taken in the workplace, community, recreational setting, or elsewhere. Pictures that show a person/people with disabilities living everyday life, participating in the community, or utilizing accessibility features found in our society. We hope to display these pictures through our website and/or social media efforts to highlight our great region and our community members!  Please email your pictures to Questions can be directed to Erin Sember-Chase, Project Coordinator, at or 1-800-949-4232.  

Register Now for our Free 2013 Webinars!

The NEADA Center will be offering free monthly webinars on a variety of topics. Upcoming webinars include "Disability as Diversity: Including America's Largest Diversity Population in Diversity Plan and Practice" on July 25th; "Disability Disclosure in the Workplace: Recent Research on Current Practices & Challenges" on August 29th; and "New Regulations: Intersections and Crossroads: ADA and territorial laws and policies in the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico" held on September 26th. To register, visit

What's New in Our Region:

Announcing New EDI Social Insurance Twitter Account

Follow the new twitter account EDI Social Insurance @EDI_RAC79 for daily information concerning return to work efforts and public benefits. Daily "blasts" will provide information concerning work incentives, benefits planning and other items of interest to individuals receiving public benefits and attempting to make informed choices concerning their return to work efforts and movement toward financial independence and stability.

NYS Approves New Regulations for Graduating Students with Disabilities

The New York State Board of Regents has passed new state regulations that will directly affect students with disabilities and their graduation. The new credential, which students will be able to earn upon graduation, is called the New York State Career Development and Occupational Studies (CDOS) Commencement Credential. This new credential will provide an assessment of skills and aptitude for post-school employment. For more information, visit

Department of Labor Awards NY Additional Grant for Help with Sandy Cleanup

The Department of Labor has awarded New York with a National Emergency Supplemental grant in the amount of $23,314,255 to help with the continued cleanup and rebuilding post-Hurricane Sandy. The counties available for such assistance and other FEMA public assistance aid includes the Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York, Queens, Suffolk, Rockland, and Westchester. If you are interested in more information on the designated disaster areas in New York, visit or to read more, visit

What's New in the Rest of the Country:

National Disability Employment Awareness Month Theme Announced

Held each October, National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) is a national campaign that raises awareness about disability employment issues and celebrates the many varied contributions of America's workers with disabilities. The theme for 2013 is "Because We Are EQUAL to the Task." For more information on the NDEAM, visit     

New Workplace Ergonomics Reference Guide

The Computer/Electronic Accommodations Program is offering a guide to give examples of appropriate workstation ergonomics and advice for employing these strategies. This guide will be helpful for business practices by improving the work of employees and ensuring their safety while operating in the office. Access this guide at:

Poor Conditions in Transition Program Found through Federal Investigation

After an investigation was conducted by the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division, it was found that students with developmental disabilities were being paid little to nothing for assignments as part of a vocational program's sheltered workshop.  The students worked in a sheltered workshop while enrolled in a vocational program at Mount Pleasant High School located in Rhode Island. The investigation uncovered that the sheltered workshop segregated these students without need; additionally, the organization did not properly document the students' work nor the pay they were due. A settlement was reached in which the students will now be given employment support to find productive employment. The sheltered workshop has been closed since the investigation. To read more, visit

Accessible Guidelines for Passenger Vessels Released to Public for Comments

Public comments on the new accessible guidelines for recently constructed or improved passenger vessels are due September 23rd. In accordance with the ADA, these new regulations offer a standard for design to provide access to people with disabilities. The U.S. Access Board was responsible for this proposal and once these guidelines are finalized they will be adopted into their ADA Accessibility Guidelines for Buildings and Facilities. The Department of Transportation and the Department of Justice will also use these new regulations to establish requirements. For more information on how to submit comments, visit

The Just Treatment of Students with Hepatitis B

The Departments of Justice, Health and Human Services, and Education recently sent a joint letter to schools of medicine, dentistry, nursing, and other health related schools advising them against discrimination of students with Hepatitis B in their programs. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has put forward new recommendations for these programs after recognizing the discriminatory treatment of these students. The joint letter urged health related schools to follow recommendations accordingly. To read more, visit  or

Need for Accessible Technology in Higher Education

New technological advancements are presenting barriers for students with disabilities, especially individuals with visual impairments. Disability rights advocates and book publishers are working together to urge the government to establish a national protocol for accessibility in higher-level education. The lack of a clear standard has led to the use of inaccessible materials leaving students with disabilities at a disadvantage, in turn, violating the ADA. To read more, visit

Opportunities for You!

NYS Office of Emergency Management Human Services Stakeholder Meetings

These summits are intended to provide information on emergency response and facilitate participation and feedback from all attendees, in regards to individuals with disabilities. The Stakeholder meeting will include food and beverages and will be held from 8:30am-3:00pm. The agenda includes a focus on topics of mass care (i.e. shelter, feeding, access and functional needs, and pets), disaster recovery centers, and recovery. Upcoming summits dates and locations include:

July 24th in Batavia located at the Clarion Hotel, 8250 Park Rd, Batavia 14020

July 25th in Syracuse located at the Double Tree Hotel, 6301 Rte 298 East Syracuse 13057. To register, visit

Webinar on Accessible Information and Communication Technology Policy

The session will give insight on the U.S. policy relating to accessible information and communication technology (ICT). The presentation will focus on the current laws, regulations and policies regarding ICT. This webinar will be held Thursday, July 25th from 2:00pm to 3:30pm EST. For more information, visit

Accessibility Online Webinar Series: Accessible Transportation Facilities

This webinar will offer a look at the standards for accessibility in transportation facilities as covered by the ADA and how they are implemented by the Department of Transportation. An emphasis will be given to specific facilities such as fixed guideway stations and bus shelters. This webinar will be held Thursday, August 1st  from 2:30pm to 4:00pm EST. For more information, visit

Audio Conference Series on Athletic Opportunities for Students with Disabilities: Focus on Colleges and Universities

This session will offer tactics to improve the integration of students with disabilities into athletic programs at colleges and universities. Additionally, methods for creating more inclusive and accessible programs will be discussed.

This webinar will be held Tuesday, August 20th from 2:00pm to 3:30pm EST, for more information, visit

Special Spotlight: The 2013 ADA Anniversary

July 26th marks the anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and provides us with an opportunity to celebrate and recognize this law that has provided momentous gains in the lives of people with disabilities toward ensuring their civil rights are protected. This year marks 23 years of the ADA from its passage. The following links provide some opportunities and resources to join in on the celebration and learn about the progress that has been made thus far!

American Association of People with Disabilities Annual ADA Celebration

Free Audio-Conference on the ADA Anniversary Update: 23 Years Later

Honoring the Legacies of Olmstead and Justin Dart

National Museum of American History Launches History of Disability Online Exhibition 

Family Friendly ADA Anniversary Celebration

National Council on Disability: Policy Briefing and ADA Anniversary Event

ADA Anniversary Toolkit