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‘Second-class citizens:’ Hard-of-hearing employees frustrated by lack of accessibility in remote and hybrid working

If you think the enforced remote-working set-up of the last 16 months has been tough, multiply that by...

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Accessibility news archive

Here's what happened in the accessibility world from July 11–17, 2021

Be sure to check Accessibility News Briefly for the latest news and updates — and don't forget to subscribe to get weekly recaps right to your inbox. It's the easiest way to stay informed.

As a reminder, we provide these news briefs for your information and convenience, and we don't endorse or recommend any of these publications or products.

Invisible Riders: Subways and Accessibility

July 17, 2021, Our Town: Most New Yorkers have a love-hate relationship with the MTA, but while the iconic transit authority might be occasionally irritating to the average commuter, it provides countless more difficulties for individuals with disabilities. Disability advocacy has grown in recent years, with organizations such as Disability Pride NYC spreading awareness through events such as the annual Disability Pride Parade. While the parade, which happens every July in honor of Disability Pride Month, is postponed this year due to COVID concerns, organizations are working to make everyday necessities, such as the subway, more inclusive of disabled people.

State parks aim to boost accessibility

July 17, 2021, The Villages Daily Sun: As more people head outdoors for their summer vacations, Florida is focused on expanding disabled access to state parks.

Anticipating What a Rumored 'Apple Pay Later' Service Could Mean for Disabled People and Accessibility

July 16, 2021, Forbes: A new report from Bloomberg this week, co-bylined by Mark Gurman and Sridhar Natarajan, claims Apple and Goldman Sachs are said to be collaborating on a new payments service that would allow customers to pay for goods in installments over time. The buy-now-pay-later service has been dubbed “Apple Pay Later” inside Apple.

A year after accessibility criticism, Twitter finally offers captions for voice tweets

July 16, 2021, 9to5Mac: It's more than a year since Twitter launched voice tweets, offering users the option of tweeting a spoken message of up to 140 seconds in length. The company has now addressed accessibility concerns by offering captions for voice tweets.

Lawsuits Over Digital Accessibility for People With Disabilities Are Rising

July 15, 2021, The Wall Street Journal: The number of U.S. lawsuits alleging that websites, apps and digital videos were inaccessible to people with disabilities rose 64% in the first half of 2021 from a year earlier, a new report says.

Broadway to get more wheelchair access

July 15, 2021, The Business Times: TWO months before most of Broadway's theaters reopen, the US attorney's office in Manhattan announced on Tuesday that a major operator had agreed to provide more wheelchair access at its five theatres as part of a settlement.

Return to the workplace highlights accessibility concerns for disabled employees

July 15, 2021, ABC News: As COVID-19 restrictions loosen and the country settles into a new normal, disability advocates have mixed feelings about the future of the workplace and public health in the U.S.

Maryland Announces Disability Plan To Improve Services, Programs For Disabled

July 14, 2021, CBS Baltimore: Maryland state agencies will coordinate services and policies that ensure compliance with state and federal civil rights laws and provide community-based supports, emergency preparedness, housing, transportation, employment, health care, accessible technology, education, and family support to Marylanders with disabilities under the new Maryland Disabilities Plan released Wednesday.

Device taps brain waves to help paralyzed man communicate

July 14, 2021, AP News: In a medical first, researchers harnessed the brain waves of a paralyzed man unable to speak — and turned what he intended to say into sentences on a computer screen.

Startups aren’t doing enough to support employees with disabilities

July 14, 2021, Sifted–EU: The shift to remote work over the last year has no doubt opened up career opportunities for people with disabilities, says Franziska Hauck, people lead and coach in engineering at Berlin-based software company Signavio and disability advocate.

5 People Share Their Accessible WFH Setups — And They Get the Job Done

July 13, 2021, Refinery29: Millions of people who were used to going into offices to work have spent the past year trying to do the same job at home. It’s certainly been an ongoing task, especially when it comes to finding a professional background in a quiet corner, but what about people who have to accommodate their bodies’ needs alongside their jobs’ requirements?

Britney Spears Doesn't Get The Freedom Of Choice. Neither Do People Under Guardianship

July 13, 2021, Wisconsin Public Radio: Jordan Anderson is a recent high school graduate who loves politics and hunting. When he turned 18 last year, he almost had his gun and voting rights taken away because of a state law that requires he pass a competency test. The court decides if he passes.

5 Simple Ways To Make The Workplace Better For Disabled Employees

July 13, 2021, Yahoo! Finance: Disabled professionals are far rarer than we should be. Access barriers, institutional discrimination, and social misconceptions can all push disabled workers out of employment opportunities they’d likely otherwise be offered. For those who are hired, these same hurdles continue to exist in a way that prevents us from experiencing full inclusion in our workplaces.

Professor Sues South University Over Return-to-Campus Order

July 13, 2021, The College Post: An associate professor with heart and lung complications at South University in Virginia has filed a lawsuit against the school over a return-to-work mandate, alleging that she is being forced to work on campus despite severe health risks.

What If a Job Applicant Discloses a Disability?

July 12, 2021, SHRM: Employers generally are prohibited from asking questions about disabilities before making conditional job offers to applicants, but what should an employer do if a job applicant voluntarily discloses a disability at the interview stage?

Town of Dighton Awarded $118,838 Safe Streets and Paths Accessibility Grant

July 12, 2021, John Guilfoil Public Relations: The Town of Dighton is pleased to announce that the community has been awarded a grant from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation to help improve roadway and sidewalk accessibility in various areas throughout town.

What does accessible travel mean to you?

July 12, 2021, The Points Guy: We’re kicking off Accessible Travel Week here at TPG with a discussion about what “accessible” actually means. The truth is accessible travel can mean many things to many people, from being able to book hotel rooms with truly wheelchair-accessible bathrooms to traveling through airports with pet relief areas for service animals to visiting theme parks that cater to guests on the autism spectrum to destinations that are safe for the LGBTQ community.

Disabled boy told to leave theme park in Chicago

July 12, 2021, Yahoo! News: A 10-year-old disabled boy was recently told to leave a theme park in Chicago when a security guard told his mother that he was “a liability.”

How the airline industry still refuses to accommodate disability

July 11, 2021, MSNBC: When her wheelchair was severely damaged during her flight on Delta Airlines from Minneapolis to Newark, New Jersey, the model and influencer Bri Scalesse took to TikTok and recorded a video that quickly went viral. "Today my freedom and independence was taken away," she said. "I don't know how I'm going to live my life."