News You Can Use
When we find useful information related to assistive technology or disability, we'll post it here.
December 22, 2010: Emergency Preparedness Survey
The Shepherd Center in Atlanta is conducting research on the use and usability of wireless technology by people with disabilities. They need volunteers to take an online survey before December 31, 2010. The survey is brief and you will be entered in a drawing to win a gift certificate.
December 16, 2010: Project Endeavor Brings Web Access to Deaf and Hard of Hearing
On July 19 2010, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) awarded Communication Services for the Deaf (CSD) a $14.9 million two-year contract that will fund Project Endeavor to address the barriers preventing deaf and hard of hearing individuals from accessing Internet-based services. Project Endeavor will achieve this goal through distributing laptop computers and providing broadband services at low or no cost, connecting low-income deaf and hard of hearing individuals to both broadband and technical assistance. The project will focus on deaf and hard of hearing job seekers and students transitioning from school to work. Qualified consumers can receive 12 months of Sprint unlimited 3G/4G service and a Dell 11Z netbook for one upfront payment of $230. Consumers that do not currently have broadband access may qualify for Project Endeavor if they are:
- deaf or hard of hearing (with a bilateral hearing loss of 40db or greater)
- at least 17 years of age
- a U.S. Citizen or hold a valid Green Card
- enrolled in any a selected group of public-assistance programs or qualify based on an income assessment.
Link to source: http://www.projectendeavor.org.
November 11, 2010: Rescheduled! NSF to Host Accessibility and Accommodations Awareness Technology Webinar and Expo
The National Science Foundation's Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) will host an Accessibility and Accommodations Awareness Technology Webinar and Expo, originally scheduled for October 28, will now take place on December 15 at the Foundation's headquarters at 4201 Wilson Boulevard in Arlington, Virginia. To begin the event, Gregg Vanderheiden, Ph.D., Director of the Trace Research and Development Center at the University of Wisconsin, will deliver a webinar lecture on "Building Access into ICT, the Web, and the Future" from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. The Expo will showcase and include demonstrations of different assistive technologies. There will be sign language interpreters during the Expo from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. UbiDuo Face-to-Face Communicator Devices will be available to facilitate communications between deaf and hearing individuals from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Real-time captioning for the Webinar will be provided by Caption Colorado, Inc. For more information, contact Katherine Otts at email@example.com or Shawn Murray at firstname.lastname@example.org.
October 26, 2010: Department of Justice to Host Hearings on ADA Revisions
The Department of Justice has scheduled three public hearings on four Advance Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRMs), which seek public comment on the possibility of revising the regulations implementing the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to (1) address accessible web information and services, (2) movie captioning and video description, (3)accessibility of Next Generation 9-1-1, and (4) accessible equipment and furniture. The ANPRMs were published in the Federal Register on July 26, 2010, and the comment period for them closes on January 24, 2011. The public hearings are scheduled for the following dates and locations:
- November 18, 2010, from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., CST, at Access Living, 115 West Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60654.
- December 16, 2010, from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., EST, at the United States Access Board, 1331 F Street, NW, Washington, DC 20004.
- January 2011 in San Francisco, CA, at a date and location to be announced in the near future on the ADA Home Page at www.ada.gov.
Link to source: http://www.ada.gov/anprm2010/public_hearing_anprm_2010.htm.
October 15, 2010: Library of Congress to Host Assistive Technology Demonstration Fair
On October 20, the Library of Congress will host an Assistive Technology Demonstration Fair in the main lobby of the James Madison Memorial Building in Washington, DC from 10 am to 2 pm. The public is invited to view a variety of the latest accessible computing and smart phone technologies for the home and the workplace. ASL interpreters will be provided. The Madison Building is located at 101 Independence Avenue, SE, and is near the Capitol South Metro station. For more information, contact Eric Eldritch, the Library's ADA Access Program Manager, 202-707-0698.
October 12, 2010: NPR Discusses Designing Accessible Technology
On October 12, the Kojo Nnamdi Show hosted an hour-long discussion of how some innovative technology companies are integrating accessibility into their design process for computers, smart phones and other high-tech devices as well as websites and other Web-based applications. Guests included Jonathan Lazar, Director of the Universal Usability Laboratory, Towson University; Eve Hill from Syracuse University; and Anne Taylor, Director of Access Technology for the National Federation of the Blind. A captioned audio replay and transcript are available at the WAMU website.
August 2, 2010: Department of Justice to Prepare New ADA Regulations
On July 26, the U.S. Department of Justice issued 4 proposals to revise regulations under the Americans with Disability Act (ADA). The proposals were issued as advance notices of proposed rulemaking (ANPRMs) in the Federal Register. They address (1) the accessibility of websites; (2) the provision of captioning and video description in movies shown in theaters; (3) accessible equipment and furniture; and (4) the ability of 9-1-1 centers to take text and video calls from individuals with disabilities. The public is invited to commment on the proposals, and comments are due by January 24, 2011.
Link to source: http://www.ada.gov/anprm2010.htm.
July 30, 2010: CCVIP Post AT Demonstration Videos on YouTube
The Computer Center for Visually Impaired People (CCVIP) of Baruch College has posted videos on YouTube demonstrating several types of assistive products. Videos discussing the PenFriend, the ID Mate Barcode Reader, and the Aukey Video Magnifier are now online and ready to be viewed.
Link to source: http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=ccvipatbaruch&aq=f.
July 27, 2010: Emergency Preparedness for People with Disabilities
Craig Fugate, Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) wrote an op-ed for the CNN website discussing the need to include people with disabilities in all emergency response plans and activities at the federal, state and local levels. He cites the results of FEMA's failure to address this issue for Hurricane Katrina and other disasters, and he highlights FEMA's current initiatives to incorporate to the needs and concerns of peoples with disabilities into FEMA present operations and future plans, including the establishment of the Office of Disability Integration and Coordination.
May 27, 2010: Disability.gov Counts Down to ADA's 20th Anniversary
The Disability.gov website has launched a 100-day blog to countdown to the 20th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). A new entry will be posted daily to "explore one of our nation's most important civil rights achievements, including examining the ramifications of the ADA, historical points leading up to its creation and how supporting the rights of individuals with disabilities supports ALL Americans."
Link to source: http://blog.govdelivery.com/usodep/100-days-to-the-ada/.
May 14, 2010: Amputee Surfer is CNN's Hero of the Week
Dana Cummings, co-founder of the Association of Amputee Surfers (AmpSurf), was cited as a 2010 CNN Hero on May 14. AmpSurf, which is open to people with all disablities, holds monthly clinics on California beach. Participants are provided with food, surfboards, wetsuits, sunscreen and towels.
May 12, 2010: Corollary Softball Offers Opportunity for Students with Disabilities
Montgomery County, Maryland has started a new program to offer high school sports that are accessible to students with disabilities. The May 12 issue of the Washington Post describes the thrill experienced by a girl with visual disabilities and her family who is now able to participate in an adapted version of softball called "corollary softball."
March 10, 2010: Federal Government to Hold Hiring Event for People with Disabilities
On April 26, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and the Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) are sponsoring a historic day-long Federal Hiring Event for People with Disabilities. Representatives from many agencies will be reviewing resumes prior to the event, and inviting prospective candidates for interviews. To participate, review the Hiring Event information and the Individuals with Disabilities and Veterans pages on USAJOBS.gov. You must submit your resume to the following email address: Hiringevent@opm.gov. Documentation supporting your disability (such as proof of disability and job readiness certification letters) and/or veteran's status (such as VA letter and DD-214) can be provided with your resume, or at the time you are interviewed. [Note: To ensure the hiring process moves quickly and to expedite the agency's ability to make tentative offers, you are strongly encouraged to submit your supporting documentation along with your resume.] If you need assistance submitting your resume or have any questions regarding this event, including the type of documentation required please forward your inquiry to the following email address: Hiringevent@opm.gov.
Link to source: http://www.usajobs.gov/DisabilityHiringEvent.asp.
February 2, 2010: 2010 Paralympic Games Coming in March
The 2010 Paralympic Games will be held in Vancouver and Whistler, British Columbia, Canada from March 12 througn March 21, 2010. The competition will include five events: alpine skiing, biathlon, nordic skiing, sledge hockey, and wheelchair curling.
Link to source: http://www.vancouver2010.com/paralympic-games/.
January 7, 2010: Attention ATIA Conference attendees and Orlando residents!
If you are attending the ATIA Conference January 27-30 in Orlando or just live in the Orlando area and you have used the AbleData website to find product information in the past year, we want to talk with you... and we will pay you $75 for the privilege. The discussion will take no longer than 90 minutes, and we have times available throughout each day and evening of the conference. If you have the time, we invite you to take part in an interview to discuss how you use the AbleData website. We are especially interested in talking with people with disabilities, caregivers and seniors. For people with vision-related disabilities, we can provide a computer that is configured to meet your needs. Our space is completely accessible so people with mobility disabilities are welcome to participate.
To schedule an interview, please send us an email at email@example.com or call AbleData at 1-800-227-0216. We have a limited number of times available so call or email soon to guarantee that you can get an extra $75 to spend in sunny Florida.