E-Bulletin September 15, 2020

September 1, 2020

We post our bi-weekly bulletin to keep you up to date on disability-related resources, news, and other items of interest. This information is being provided solely for non-commercial, nonprofit educational purposes, including news reporting and research. It is not intended for commercial purposes. Further, we understand that our readers generally read the articles and information online, at the websites provided in the hyperlinks, rather than relying solely on our synopses or copies. We are not responsible for the accessibility or the content of other websites. Please be aware that some links provided are time sensitive, and may become inactive at any time.

We include links to articles, editorials and opinion pieces, press releases, and other materials that represent diverse perspectives. Inclusion does not imply endorsement of any products, services, sources, information, or opinions expressed in these materials.

Visit the Trainings section for more information on ADA and disability related trainings, meetings, and conferences.

General News

“Judge Orders White House to Include Sign Language in COVID Briefings”

A federal judge recently ruled that the Trump administration may have violated the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 by not including American Sign Language interpretation in televised briefings on the coronavirus pandemic.

COVID-19/Emergency Preparedness Resource Guide for Kinship Families and Grandfamilies

The Administration for Community Living (ACL) put together this collection of resources for families in which children are being raised by grandparents or other adults who are not their parents. The guide includes information on planning for and managing crises, as well as finding local sources of assistance with finances, housing, respite care, mental health services, and more.

“When the World Isn’t Designed for Our Bodies”

This article highlights a new book, What Can a Body Do? How We Meet the Built World, which argues that “disability is a social phenomenon, not a medical one,” and envisions what it would be like to change the built environment to adapt to the different body types of people with disabilities, instead of changing bodies through prosthetics or other tools.

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Employment News

“For Job Seekers with Disabilities, Soft Skills Don't Impress in Early Interviews”

A new study by Rutgers University researchers finds that job candidates with disabilities are more likely to make a positive first impression on prospective employers when they promote technical skills rather than soft skills, such as their ability to lead others.

EEOC Updates COVID-19 Technical Assistance Publication

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) updated its technical assistance document, "What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws" to address common questions about COVID-19 and federal equal employment opportunity laws.

“Burton Blatt Institute Receives $4.3M to Lead National Center on Employment Policy for Persons with Disabilities”

The Burton Blatt Institute (BBI) at Syracuse University has received $4.3 million from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) to lead a new national Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (RRTC) on Disability Inclusive Employment Policy. The RRTC will address current challenges to the employment and economic advancement of people with disabilities due to the adverse impacts of COVID-19.

“National Trends in Disability Employment (nTIDE) August 2020 Jobs Report: Modest Gains Encouraging for Americans with Disabilities”

August job numbers show improvement for Americans with disabilities, according to the most recent National Trends in Disability Employment – Monthly Update (nTIDE), issued by Kessler Foundation and the University of New Hampshire’s Institute on Disability (UNH-IOD). Experts express caution due to the many factors that could affect economic recovery.

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Health and Wellness News

Research Brief: Social Isolation and Loneliness During the First Wave of COVID-19

The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center for Place-Based Solutions for Rural Community Participation, Health, and Employment (RTC: Rural) published a research brief outlining findings of a survey related to health, social connectedness, and loneliness for people with disabilities before and after the first wave of stay-at-home orders.

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Recreation News

“The Paralyzed World War II Veterans Who Invented Wheelchair Basketball”

This article outlines the history of how veterans with paraplegia popularized the sport in the late 1940s, and how it impacted the disability rights movement.

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Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) News

Updated Transition Guide for Students with Disabilities

The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) at the U.S. Department of Education updated its Transition Guide to Postsecondary Education and Employment for Students and Youth with Disabilities to include information about dual enrollment in high school and postsecondary courses, the Achieving a Better Life Experience Act (ABLE Act), and other guidance on planning for transition to life after high school.

OSERS also issued a letter to schools and vocational rehabilitation agencies to remind them of their responsibilities to continue providing transition services even amid the pandemic.

“My Child Has a Disability. What Will Her Education Be Like This Year?”

This article offers a look into the challenges faced by public school students with disabilities as learning has moved online. It also highlights concerns about schools' abilities to meet the educational needs of these students during the pandemic.

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Training, Events, and Opportunities to Participate

Seeking Older Adults and/or People with Disabilities for Survey on Changes in Travel Behavior During COVID-19

The Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access at the University at Buffalo is interested in learning about changes in the travel behavior of people with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey is open to any individuals who are aged 65 and older and/or adults with disabilities. As an incentive for taking the survey, participants can enter a drawing to win a $50 gift card. The deadline to participate is October 15, 2020.

Johns Hopkins Disability-Led Research Study on the COVID-19 Response

The Johns Hopkins Disability Health Research Center is looking for adults with all types of disabilities to participate in virtual focus groups discussing healthcare, accessibility, and employment-related gaps in the COVID-19 response.

U.S. Department of Transportation Inclusive Design Challenge

The U.S. Department of Transportation announced the opening of Stage I of the Inclusive Design Challenge. The Challenge seeks innovative design solutions that can enable people with physical, sensory, and cognitive disabilities to use automated vehicles. Stage I concept proposals are due October 30, 2020.

ADA Today Podcast

Check out our latest episode on "COVID-19 and "College" to learn more about how the pandemic is affecting students with disabilities and post-secondary education institutions.

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