E-Bulletin: March 26, 2024

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.

March: Women’s History Month

Check out the Smithsonian’s collection of stories, art, and resources related to women with disabilities.

YouTube: School Animation Series About Disability

This channel features kid-friendly videos designed to help elementary school students better understand disability, the ADA, service animals, adaptive sports, and more.

Long COVID, Disability, and Underserved Communities: Recommendations for Employers

This brief from the Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion (EARN) can help employers develop workplace policies that ensure the effective inclusion of people with Long COVID, especially people with disabilities who also belong to other historically underserved groups.

Building a Disability-Inclusive Culture: Managers Make All the Difference

This document from the Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion (EARN) provides an overview of important topics to cover when training workplace managers on disability inclusion.

Justice Department Files Statement of Interest in Lawsuit Concerning Unnecessary Law Enforcement Responses to Mental Health Emergencies

The U.S. Department of Justice filed a statement of interest in Bread for the City v. District of Columbia, a lawsuit alleging that the District’s reliance on police officers as the default responders to mental health emergencies violates the ADA.

The statement explains that the ADA requires public entities to make sure people with mental health disabilities have an equal opportunity to benefit from emergency response systems. This may require dispatching a different type of response to mental health emergencies when appropriate, such as mobile crisis teams staffed with behavioral health professionals.

“Sending mobile crisis response teams to mental health emergencies when appropriate is akin to sending EMTs to a reported heart attack,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “Relying on a less effective, potentially harmful response to people experiencing mental health emergencies may deprive people with mental health disabilities of an equal opportunity to benefit from a critical public service.”

Topical Guide: Rural Communities and Building Social Connection for Older Adults and People with Disabilities

This guide outlines factors affecting social isolation and loneliness in rural communities, and offers practical strategies and examples of successful initiatives that may help aging- and/or disability-related organizations enhance or initiate social engagement efforts.

“House Committee Launches Investigation into Organ Transplant Network”

The House Committee on Energy and Commerce has launched a bipartisan investigation into the U.S. organ transplant system – the latest scrutiny of the system following reports from the Senate and whistleblowers alleging its failures and mismanagement.

Seeking Participants: Focus Group on Workplace Accommodations

April 10, 2024
5:00 – 6:00 p.m. Eastern
The Mid-Atlantic ADA Center is currently seeking individuals with disabilities who are 55 years of age or older, living and working (part- or full-time) in the Mid-Atlantic region (DC, DE, MD, PA, VA, WV) to participate in a focus group. 

We want to find out more about how older people with disabilities get information and gain understanding of the ADA and accommodations in the workplace. Qualified participants will receive a $25 Amazon gift card after the focus group.

Interested individuals should email the Mid-Atlantic ADA Center to confirm eligibility and review pre-registration requirements.

Webinar: Common Myths and Mix-Ups: Accessibility Standards

April 17, 2024
2:00 – 3:30 p.m. Eastern
This session will review and clarify common sources of confusion in the ADA Standards for Accessible Design, including application of the standards in new construction and alterations, electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, toilet and bathing rooms, signage, accessible routes and ground surfaces, and other areas and elements.

Online Dialog: Advancing Disability Inclusion in Very Small Businesses

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) is sponsoring this dialog to learn more about the needs of very small businesses that employ workers with disabilities (or would like to) or are owned by disabled entrepreneurs. Very small businesses are those with fewer than 50 employees. DOL wants to learn about these businesses’ successes in supporting workers with disabilities, the challenges they face, and the impact of current policies and regulations on their outcomes. Ideas discussed during this online dialogue will help inform DOL’s future policies, resources, technical assistance, and activities to support very small businesses in their efforts to advance disability inclusion. The dialog begins March 26th.

Seeking Participants with Blindness or Low Vision for Study on Career Mentorship Experiences and Employment

The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Employment of People who Are Blind or Have Low Vision seeks participants with blindness or low vision, between the ages of 30 and 65, who have had a career mentor or received career mentorship. Participants will complete a survey of approximately 10 minutes. Participants who complete the survey will have the option to enter a drawing for one of three $100 gift cards.

Southwest ADA Center Seeking Study Participants

The Southwest ADA Center is seeking participants ages 18+ for a research study on the perspectives of individuals who use service animals or emotional support animals in their workplaces. Participation is confidential and can be done via telephone or Zoom. Participants will be compensated for their time. For more information or to schedule an interview, email Jocelyne Fajardo or call 713-797-7118.

RRTC on Accommodations, Employment Supports, and Success for People with Physical Disabilities Seeks Study Participants

This Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (RRTC) is seeking participants with physical disabilities, at least 18 years old, for two studies related to the use of assistive technologies and accommodations in employment.

One study will focus on the impact of assistive technologies and accommodations on employment outcomes, including full-time permanent employment and/or non-traditional jobs (e.g., freelance, contract, temporary, etc.). Participants will be interviewed over Zoom or by telephone; interviews will take approximately 90 minutes, and participants will receive $50 as compensation for their time. To be considered, please complete the screening questionnaire, or email Salimah LaForce. 

A second study will focus on the use of assistive technologies and accommodations in non-traditional employment experiences only (e.g., freelance, contract, temporary, etc.) of people with physical disabilities. Those who complete a 20-minute online survey will be entered into a drawing to receive one of 120 $10 gift cards. Contact Fran Harris with any questions.