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Disability NEWS - January 30, 2012


JANUARY 30, 2012

  • February 2012 Portland Commission on Disability meetings
  • City Emergency Management seeks feedback on earthquake response
  • Class Action Lawsuit seeks an end to segregated sheltered workshops
  • New accessibility requirements for hotels go into effect March 15
  • Community Budget Forum set February 9 to address TriMet budget shortfall
  • Social Security requests public comment on homeless SSI recipients’ needs
  • Emergency preparedness includes being ready for weather events
  • Visit the City’s Disability Program Facebook page for current postings


Portland Commission on Disability
January 2012 Subcommittee Meetings

PCoD Executive Board Meeting

Wednesday, February 1, 6 to 8 p.m.

Rose Room, City Hall, 1221 SW 4th Avenue

PCoD Accessibility in the Built Environment Subcommittee

Monday, February 13, 10 am to 1 pm

1900 Building, 1900 SW Fourth Ave, Room 4A

PCoD Livability and Wellness Subcommittee

Tuesday, February 14, 3 to 5 pm

Pettygrove Room, City Hall, 1221 SW 4th Avenue

PCoD Public Outreach and Awareness Subcommittee

Wednesday,February 15, 3 to 5 p.m.

Disability Rights Oregon

620 SW Fifth Avenue, Suite 500

PCoD Employment Subcommittee

Friday, February 24, 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.

Pettygrove Room, City Hall, 1221 SW 4th Avenue


City Emergency Management asks feedback on earthquake plan

The Portland Bureau of Emergency Management (PBEM) is soliciting public feedback on the City’s Earthquake Response Appendix. The Appendix is a supplement to the City’s Basic Emergency Operations Plan and a framework for its ever-evolving approach to earthquake response. The document will go to City Council for consideration and PBEM is asking for the public to review it and provide feedback.

It is especially important that people with disabilities and providers examine the appendix and take time to respond with their views. To learn more, click here for information and links to view the document and for submitting feedback.

For the record, the 312th anniversary on January 26 of a 9.0 magnitude earthquake was noted as being of the same magnitude as the recent quake off of Japan’s eastern coastline. It has been observed by scientists that these strong earthquakes occur approximately every 300 to 600 years and it is a matter of when, not if, the next one will strike.


Class Action Lawsuit seeks end to segregated,
sub-minimum wage sheltered workshops

A class action lawsuit was filed January 25 in U.S. Circuit Court against the State of Oregon to end the practice of having people with disabilities work in sheltered workshops for sub-minimum wages. The state spends $30 million a year for these workshops, but could reduce the costs by funding programs that help provide jobs at minimum wage or better.

The United Cerebral Palsy Association of Oregon & Southwest Washington with eight individuals representing thousands of Oregonians with intellectual or physical disabilities filed the action against Gov. John Kitzhaber and top managers at the Department of Human Services. The hope is to set a national precedent and end the practice of using sheltered workshops where the workers complete repetitive or rote tasks for subminimum wage. Click here to read the news report posted online.


New hotel accessibility requirements go into effect March 15

Hotels and places of lodging need to be prepared for new accessibility requirements which take effect March 15 and to reference the new 2010 standards which mandate a higher level of accessibility than previous ones. In conjunction with the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Department of Justice is conducting the implementation of new regulations that impact the hospitality industry.

The Northwest ADA Center and Mid-Atlantic ADA center, with the their national network, have recently developed two online resources to promote accessibility and opportunity for people with disabilities within the hospitality industry. Visit and for hospitality industry information. The Northwest ADA Center website offers information on ADA assistance, training, tools, facts and resources  for consumers, business, government and architects/contractors at


Community Budget Forum set February 9 about TriMet budget

TriMet is facing a $12 to $17 million budget shortfall in the next budget year because of lower-than-expected revenue from payroll taxes and anticipated cuts in federal funding. TriMet has partnered with the Immigrant & Refugee Organization (IRCO) for a Community Budget Forum on February 9 from 6 to 8 pm in IRCO’s Community Room, 10301 NE Glisan St. It is requesting community participation at the forum in sharing feedback about the agency’s budget proposal.

Three other open houses on the budget are scheduled for February 13, 15 and 16. More information, including times and locations is available at After Trimet reviews and considers the feedback received from riders and the public, it will release a more detailed budget action proposal for public review.


SSA requests public comment on homeless SSI recipients’ needs

The Social Security Administration is requesting information from the public regarding the unique needs of homeless Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients, particularly those who live in public emergency shelters for the homeless, in an effort to better understand and address their needs. The SSI programs provide a minimum income level for aged, blind or people with disabilities who do not have income or resources specified in the Social Security Act.

The Oregon Opportunity Network has posted further information on the administration’s request and a link to the full notice on its website. Public input is essential so the agency knows the needs of people experiencing homelessness, if there are differences in populations served by public and private shelters and whether SSI eligibility rules hinder the ability of people to access shelter.


Emergency preparedness includes preparing for weather events

Winter weather can quickly change with very serious, unexpected results. Severe ice and snow storms can cause people to be housebound and have to cope with power outages, food supply shortages and other weather-related problems. It is not just the headline-catching disasters that have experts warning that people with disabilities have an emergency preparedness plan in place before an emergency arises.

Emergency Preparedness Training is offered through a partnership with the ONI Disability Program and the Oregon Health Sciences Center. The training is for several hours and provides complete information on making a plan, things to consider, lists of supplies and materials to gather and other information to help participants deal with an unexpected emergency. Materials are provided for participants to take home for use. For information about workshops or to schedule one for a worksite or housing complex, contact Danielle Bailey by email at or by phone at 503-494-4858.


Visit Disability Program Facebook page for news, event postings

The Office of Neighborhood Involvement Disability Program Facebook page features daily postings of news, videos, events and issues of interest to people with disabilities.  Visit the program’s Facebook page to read these postings and other information posted daily on disability issues, news and concerns.


Get more news/information at the Disability Program’s website

You can access more information on resources, events and the Portland Commission on Disability at the program’s website,

To update your contact information, if you know someone who would like to receive the newsletter or if you wish to submit information for the newsletter, please contact Patrick Philpott, ONI Disability Program administrative coordinator, at:

Phone: 503-823-3881  -  TTY:503-823-6868

Please note: This information may also provided in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF formats. Please use the contact information above to make your request for an alternative format.

The Disability NEWS is distributed by the City of Portland Office of Neighborhood Involvement’s Disability Program.