New England ADA Center
January 2020 Newsletter

ADA Question of the Month - Do You Know the Answer?
Question : I'm planning to open a small holistic center on the second floor of my home. Do I need to do anything to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act, like put in an elevator? 
The answer is at the end of the newsletter.
New Hampsire's Able Plan Celebrates Two Year Anniversary
With 280 accounts and roughly $1.4 million in managed assets, families and individuals with disabilities are in a better position to plan financially without jeopardizing qualified financial benefits. "It's a game changer," said Chuck Saia, Executive Director of the Governor's Commission on Disability.

The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation's Universal Access Program Offers Adaptive Winter Activities
Adaptive cross-country skiing
Nothing says winter quite like ice skating and outdoor recreation! Whether it's cross-country skiing, sit-skiing, skating, kicksledding, snowshoeing, or hiking, we've got a little something for everyone! Join us for inclusive fun this winter. Sign up for your favorite program or try a new activity! 

Image source: image courtesy of the Universal Access Program.
Research Findings Identify Challenges to Implementing the ADA Survey for Cities and Towns in New England
Logos of the New England ADA Center and a project of the Institute for Human Centered Design
Did you know that only 7.5% of municipalities in the New England region are in full compliance with the ADA? The New England ADA Center published the results of our research study about the challenges that municipalities face in implementing the ADA.

National News
Register Now: 2020 National ADA Symposium
National ADA Symposium This annual four-day event is the most comprehensive conference on the ADA and provides the latest information on regulations and guidelines, implementation strategies, and best practices related to the ADA. Sessions cover all areas of the ADA including employment, state and local government, business, health care, higher education, and facility access. These sessions are presented by nationally recognized experts including representatives of the Dept. of Justice, EEOC, US Access Board, and Dept. of Health and Human Services .

Click here for more information.
We Can Do Better On Winter Weather Accessibility
snow shoveling Snow and ice are problems for everyone living in winter climates. But they are exponentially worse for people with disabilities. This is especially so for disabled people who don't drive, and have to rely on sidewalks and other pedestrian pathways to go to work, shop, or leave their homes for any reason.

Image source: photo courtesy of Forbes.
Snow Removal and Accessibility: Quick Tips for Small Business
snow pile
A small business owner's snow removal has a real impact on people with disabilities. It can make it easier to get into the business or create obstacles  that can make access difficult. 

Click here to learn more.
Image source: image courtesy of Great Plains ADA Center.
5 Disability Lessons Everyone Can Learn From The December Democratic Debate
Democratic debate stage
For the first time in recent memory, a moderator asked candidates a detailed question about disability policy. That question, the answers given, and some other stylistic nuances helped draw disabled voters more fully into the debate and the 2020 campaign .

Image source: image courtesy of Forbes.
black young adult with mental health conditions
The factsheet discusses the significant disparities in both the delivery and outcomes of vocational services between white people with disabilities and black people with disabilities.

Image source: image courtesy of Transitions to Adulthood Center for Research.
Participate: Seeking Comment to Improve the Accessibility of Lavatories on Single-Aisle Aircraft
US Dept. of Transportation seal
The U.S. Department of Transportation is looking to improve the accessibility of single-aisle aircraft, which are increasingly being used by airlines for long-haul flights.  At present, there is no requirement that airlines provide accessible lavatories on that style of aircraft. The inability to use the lavatory on long flights can present significant challenges to passengers with disabilities, and poses a deterrent to travel by air.

Click here to participate.
The Southwest ADA Regional Center is conducting a survey to investigate the impact of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Participants must have personal or professional experience with disability issues. Results from the survey will help researchers understand what aspects of society have become more accessible due to the ADA and what areas still require further investigation and proposed solutions.

Click here to learn how to participate.
ADA 30 years logo
Throughout the year the ADA National Network and associated regional centers will celebrate 30 years of progress in access and inclusion.The goal is to continue awareness about the law and disability inclusion in our workplaces, schools and communities.

ADA Checklist for existing Facilities
Our ADA Checklist is a friendly and easy to use tool that will help you identify barriers to accessibility in your indoor and outdoor facilities.

Get the checklist here.
Answer to the ADA Question of the Month

Answer: You can open a business on a second floor not served by an elevator. If you make any renovations, like upgrading the bathroom or putting in a new entrance, they will need to be made accessible using the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design. Make modifications that improve accessibility and are readily achievable. Can a doorway be widened? Can you change the door knobs to have lever handles?  You can also evaluate the accessibility of your business using our Checklist for Existing Facilities. Be sure to check your state laws as well. For further information please see our fact sheet for Small Business and ADA Readily Achievable Requirements.
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New England ADA Center, a project of the Institute for Human Centered Design