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The City of Portland, Oregon

Auditor Simone Rede

Promoting open and accountable government

City makes little progress to help people with disabilities

The American’s with Disabilities Act requires that individuals with disabilities have the same access and opportunities as those without disabilities. Our 2016 audit found the City’s practices make it difficult for people to request accommodations, and the process varies by bureau. More consistent data collection and analysis would help the City be more responsive.

The Office of Equity and Human Rights has made little progress implementing the audit recommendations. Commissioner Amanda Fritz attributed the lack of action to turnover in the director position as well as among Commissioners-in-Charge of the Office. There also was disagreement among Council members and the disability community on how to proceed.

While a staff position was added in Fiscal Year 2018, the Office is behind schedule in updating its role and processes, as well as its strategic plan, and the website still needs improvement. The office is preparing additional information for meaningful access, but it had not been finalized. For more information, please see our follow-up report. We will check in again in a year to gauge progress.

--Kristine Adams-Wannberg, Senior Management Auditor