News items will help keep you up to date on disability related developments, resources, and other emerging issues. 

You can access the current and recent issues of the Center's ADA In Focus newsletter under the news menu above. The ADA In Focus newsletter is published three times each year. You can also contact our office at (800) 949-4232 Voice/TTY to request a hard copy, accessible formats, or go to the newsletter page to read current or past newsletter issues online. Please note that old newsletter issues may contain inactive links or outdated information.

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Hot Topics

October 12, 2015

The Survey of Riders with Disabilities on the Accessibility of Public Transportation is designed to improve understanding of the accessibility of public transportation for people with disabilities, and to gather evidence to support improvements. We want to hear about the experiences of riders with disabilities in using public surface or subway transportation, such as fixed route bus systems, ADA complementary paratransit, rapid rail (subway-type), light rail (streetcar-type), or other public transportation options.

The online survey is available in either English or Spanish (look for the drop-down box in the upper right hand corner to select Spanish).

Alternatively, the survey may be completed by phone, in either English or Spanish. To complete the survey by phone in English, please contact the research team at 312-996-9655. To complete the survey by phone in Spanish, please contact Ancel Montenelli at 312-413-1439. Please mention that you are calling about the ADA transportation survey.

The study is being conducted by the ADA Participatory Action Research Consortium (ADA-PARC), a collaborative research project of seven ADA Regional Centers, including our own Mid-Atlantic Center.

October 5, 2015

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) published its ADA Circular to provide guidance for transit agencies. The document explains ADA requirements in detail, using real-world examples of good practices to help ensure accessible services for passengers with disabilities. The Circular also provides illustrations of common accessibility problems and solutions, information about accessible vehicles, rail cars, and vessels covered by the FTA’s rules, and a variety of sample policies and forms, such as a checklist for newly constructed or altered transportation facilities, and sample paratransit eligibility determination letters.

October 17, 2017
October: National Physical Therapy Month

The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) is conducting its #ChoosePT campaign to promote awareness of physical therapy as a safe and effective alternative to opioids for the long-term treatment of chronic pain.

Disability Pride Resource Toolkit

This toolkit, released by the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL), is designed to help youth with disabilities, service providers, and advocates develop disability pride.

October 17, 2017
NDEAM 2017

A variety of agencies and organizations released new resources, posted blogs and videos, and promoted observation of National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) this October:

The U.S. Department of Labor blog post “Inclusion Drives Innovation” highlights the theme of this year’s NDEAM.

Employers and others can show their support for NDEAM by displaying this year’s official poster, in both English and Spanish, which is available for free download or can be ordered in hard copy through the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) NDEAM 2017 Resource Toolbox.

October 17, 2017
“Supreme Court Punts on ADA, Special Ed”

The Supreme Court declined to review a case brought against Coca-Cola by a man who is blind. The man argued that the company’s vending machines ought to be considered “places of public accommodation” and therefore subject to accessibility requirements under Title III of the ADA.

The lower court had ruled that the machines themselves are not directly subject to Title III, although the places where such machines are located (e.g., a bus station or a hospital which is clearly a place of public accommodation) may well have some responsibility to ensure the availability of goods and services.

October 17, 2017
ODEP Seeks Input on Stay-at-Work/Return-to-Work Initiative

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) is seeking input from the public as it shapes a new stay-at-work/return-to-work demonstration initiative.

Millions of American workers leave the workforce each year after experiencing an injury or illness, and many could remain in the workforce if they received effective supports. The Department is considering the development of a grant program aimed at reducing long-term disability and increasing labor force participation among these workers, and is interested in comments from members of the public, states, non-profit and philanthropic organizations, researchers, employers, health care providers, private disability insurance providers, vocational rehabilitation specialists, and other interested parties. Comments must be received by October 30, 2017.

October 3, 2017
“Cast of 'Born This Way' Responds to Winning Two Emmys and Making History”

“Born This Way,” the reality television show featuring people with Down syndrome, made history at the Creative Arts Emmys, with cast members presenting awards and the show winning two of its own.

“Deej” Highlights the Power of Inclusion

This film follows DJ Savarese (“Deej”), a self-described “nonspeaking student with autism,” who hopes the movie will open people’s eyes to “the full potential of kids with significant disabilities.”

October 3, 2017
The Promise of Assistive Technology: An Interactive Guide to Selected Products and Funding Sources

This guide from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) provides an overview of assistive products in four major categories: mobility devices, upper extremity prostheses, selected hearing technologies, and communication and speech technologies.