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Disability NEWS – March 16, 2016

Title Banner graphic for Disability NEWS

March 16, 2016

In this issue…

  • Register now for NWDSA’s 2016 All Born (In) Conference on April 23
  • Upcoming Portland Commission on Disability (PCOD) Meetings
  • Incight accepting 2016-2017 scholarship applications through April 1
  • National Federation of the Blind of Oregon offering five scholarships for 2016
  • OODH conducting Emergency Preparedness Study for persons with disabilities
  • DRO seeking public input about inadequate in-home services
  • Contact Elders in Action for information about Portland Arts Tax exemptions
  • Visit Disability Program Facebook page for more news, event postings

Register now for NWDSA’s 2016 All Born (In) Conference on April 23

The Northwest Down Syndrome Association (NWDSA) is conducting its 11th annual All Born (In) Cross-Disability Best Practices Inclusive Education Conference on Saturday, April 23 at the Holiday Inn Portland Airport. The conference is from 7:45 am to 5:30 pm and offers an exciting day for parents, caregivers, and professionals working to end segregation in neighborhood schools and the community.

Come celebrate and learn how Universal Design for Learning and Best Practices can be used to reach and teach every child. Share, learn and make connections so that participants can all go forth to open the eyes of the wider community to the fact that their children are all born “in”. There will be over 36 sessions from birth through adulthood available to attendees.

Keynote speakers are Keith Jones, a disability rights activist, composer, producer and hip hop artist and Dr. Richard A. Villa, who has worked with thousands of teachers and administrators, in development and implementation of organizational and instructional support systems for educating all students. Jones is also the Founder, President and CEO of SoulTouchin’ Experiences, an endeavor founded on the belief that in order to build a stronger community, there must be a heart and soul commitment to those who need assistance.

More details about the cross-disability conference is available on the event website [], including a link to register and download materials. For more information, contact Angela Frome by emailing or call 503-238-0522. Some scholarships are available if someone has a hardship, details available by calling the same phone number provided.

The NWDSA has been a parent-driven family support network since 1997. Its mission is to create and nurture a loving and inclusive community celebrating every person with a disability. The organization’s website offers more information about its programs, resources, how to get involved, what it does and events being held.

Upcoming Portland Commission on Disability (PCOD) Meetings

PCOD Executive Committee Meeting
Thursday, March 31 • 5 to 7 pm
Broadway Room, Office of Equity & Human Rights
Commonwealth Building, 421 SW 6th Ave, Suite 500

Portland Commission on Disability Full Commission Meeting
Friday, April 8 • 11 am to 1 pm
Bridge & Steel Rooms, Office of Equity & Human Rights
Commonwealth Building, 421 SW 6th Avenue, Suite 500

PLEASE NOTE: All Portland Commission on Disability 
meetings and events are open to the public. 
More information about PCOD is available 
at the Office of Equity and Human Rights website.

Please contact PCOD staff at
with any questions or concerns for the Commission.

Incight accepting 2016-2017 scholarship applications through April 1

Incight is offering scholarships for the 2016-2017 academic year to students with disabilities pursuing higher education. The deadline to submit applications is currently open through April 1, 2016.

Since 2004, Incight has awarded more than 850 scholarships to residents of Oregon, Washington and California. Applicants may attend school in any state, but residence is based on their permanent address. They must also have a documented disability, be attending higher education during the funding cycle and maintain full-time enrollment throughout the academic year.

Up to 100 scholarships are awarded annually with an average of $500 being provided. This scholarship is intended for students with disabilities who have demonstrated outstanding community involvement and motivation to attend higher education. Selected applicants will be notified via email in June 2016.

For more information, visit the Incight Scholarship website. Any questions or concerns may be directed by email to

Incight supports and empowers key life aspects of education, employment, and independence. Its three distinct programs provide resources to help people with disabilities realize their potential and encourage the community at large to consider greater inclusion. To find out more about Incight, visit the website.

National Federation of the Blind of Oregon offering five scholarships for 2016

Up to five scholarships will be awarded by the National Federation of the Blind of Oregon (NFB-Oregon) this year to qualified applicants. At its fall state convention, the NFB-Oregon awards the scholarships to recognize achievement by blind scholars.

There may be two scholarships awarded in the amount of $2,000; two in the amount of $3,000; and one in the amount of $5,000. The Len Hannon Scholarship (named for a former leader in the Oregon State Legislature and friend of the National Federation of the Blind of Oregon) may be awarded to an individual who has been a winner in the past and continues to make a difference in the lives of blind people. The Len Hannon Scholarship, if awarded, may be for any of the monetary denominations deemed appropriate by the Scholarship Committee.

In addition to a scholarship, each winner will be brought to the NFB of Oregon State Convention at NFB of Oregon expense. This will provide an excellent opportunity for high level networking with active blind persons in many different professions and occupations.

Information about the NFB of Oregon College Scholarship Program, applicant qualifications and the application process are available on the scholarship program webpage. The NFB of Oregon 2016 Scholarship application deadline is June 30, 2016.

OODH conducting Emergency Preparedness Study for persons with disabilities

The Oregon Office on Disability and Health (OODH) is dedicated to assuring that the needs of individuals with disabilities are considered in all aspects of emergency management.

To further that work, OODH is seeking participants in a preparedness study for people with disabilities to help the office prioritize projects and know how to best share information with the community. To participate in the survey, go to the OODH website and click the Preparedness Survey graphic link.

OODH strives to have the voice of individuals with disabilities heard and incorporated into disaster planning, mitigation, response and recovery. This is accomplished by facilitating the collaboration of people with disabilities, emergency managers, public health officials and first responders to narrow the gaps in how emergency management programs are carried out. More information about the emergency preparedness program may be found on the program’s website.

DRO seeking public input about inadequate in-home services

Disability Rights Oregon (DRO) is gathering information on how in-home services are determined for children and adults who have intellectual or developmental disabilities. DRO wants to hear about individuals’ experiences as part of its mission to promote and defend the rights of individuals with disabilities. If the individual or family member has intellectual or developmental disabilities and their in-home services hours were reduced or denied, they may contact DRO at 503-243-2081 or 1-800-452-1694 or go to the DRO website and use the online intake form.

Contact Elders in Action for information about Portland Arts Tax exemptions

Portland residents who are 70 years of age or older, or have a permanent disability may be eligible for an Arts Tax exemption, if they meet specific income requirements.

Elders in Action can explain the rules for the exemption and even help in filling out the required paperwork. Contact Elders in Action at 503-235-5474 for more information. More details are also available on their website. The Arts Tax for 2015 is due by April 18, 2016.

The Portland Department of Revenue has contracted with Elders in Action to do outreach to older adults and people with disabilities on the Arts Tax. A permanent exemption from the Arts Tax is now available to low income individuals over 70 years of age and low income individuals of any age with permanent disabilities. Elders in Action staff and volunteers will work with individuals who call or drop by their office or attend Multnomah County District Centers and other venues where they will be tabling.

Elders in Action is a nonprofit organization that advocates for older adults, provides meaningful volunteer opportunities and works to build an age-friendly community. They provide services in Multnomah, Washington, and Clackamas counties in the Portland metro area.

Visit Disability Program Facebook page for news, event postings

The Office of Neighborhood Involvement (ONI) 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.

The Disability NEWS is created and distributed twice monthly by the City of Portland’s Disability Program in the Office of Neighborhood Involvement. The NEWS, including back issues, is also available in the program’s website for viewing at this link.

To update your contact information, if you wish to submit information for the newsletter or if you know someone who would like to receive the newsletter, please email Events submitted will also be noted on the Disability Program Facebook page and featured on ONI Events calendar's list of Disability Events.

Please note: This information is available for reading online or downloading in an e-publication format.