July is Disability Pride Month

By Taryn Farley,  Disability Specialist, Office of Equity and Social Justice July is Disability Pride Month, a growing movement to build awareness of the pride people with disabilities feel in themselves. This pride movement recognizes what people with disabilities offer to society through their history, culture, and unique experiences. Disability Pride Month coincides with the celebration of the anniversary of the passing of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, better known as the ADA. The ADA has created civil rights protections and better access for people with disabilities. Disability Pride builds… Read More

Wastewater Treatment Division reaches out for input on accessibility options at a popular trailhead

by Monica Van der Vieren, Communications Specialist, Department of Parks and Natural Resources What is the first King County agency that comes to mind when you think about accessible recreation? You probably didn’t say the Wastewater Treatment Division (WTD). But WTD’s Coal Creek Sewer Upgrade Project team is focused on that important topic right now and looking for input from the community.   WTD’s pipes thread their way throughout the region, moving wastewater from city systems to treatment plants. Pipes run through parks, under trails, roads, and streets, across tidelands and wetlands…. Read More

Accommodations for mental health

As we recognize May as Mental Health Awareness Month, it is important to remember King County’s commitment to supporting employees with mental health conditions in the workplace. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), about one in five American adults, or roughly 43.8 million adults, experience mental illness in a given year. Approximately 39% of employees in the U.S. workforce have a mental health condition. And more than 50% of individuals with mental illness still avoid needed treatment. Untreated mental illness can result in other illnesses and behaviors, such as… Read More

Supporting People with Disabilities: When and how to disclose a disability

One of the key issues that came out of last October’s Disability Awareness Month was how and when to disclose a disability for both King County job applicants and employees with disabilities. Applying for jobs and maintaining positions can be stressful for anyone, but for a person with a disability–whether visible or invisible–there are added layers of complexity. Should you disclose? When should you ask for accommodations…during the hiring process or after? Disclosure of a disability is a very personal decision. Whether or not you choose to disclose, it’s important to be… Read More

Panel discussion on understanding ableism, Jan. 21

The King County Disability Consortium is hosting an online community discussion on ableism, the intersection of racism and disability, and where there is still work to do. Understanding Ableism: Nothing About Us, Without Us is an informative panel discussion on how people with disabilities/disabled people define ableism and how it shows up in their own lives. The panel will also discuss the intersection of disability and other marginalized identities, especially race, other people’s role in combating ableism, how disability justice meshes with other civil rights issues and ways we can all support… Read More

Ensuring a Disability Perspective in State Policy, online webinar 

The webinar on “Ensuring a Disability Perspective in State Policy,” hosted by the Council of State Governments (CSG) and the State Exchange on Employment and Disability, is available for viewing. The webinar, which was held as part of the CSG 2020 National Conference, features discussions on how states can include individuals with disabilities in broader policymaking, including a disability perspective in commissions on transportation, the future of work, and other state initiatives. It was the final episode in an ADA30 series produced by CSG that explored the origin and legacy of the… Read More

COVID-19 Accessible Materials for People with Disabilities webinar series, December 16, January and February 2021 

The Georgia Tech Center for Inclusive Design and Innovation presents the COVID-19 Accessible Materials for People with Disabilities webinar series. The following dates and topics are available for employees to register for:  Wednesday, Dec. 16, from 11 a.m. to noon. Register here for “A Closer Look: Mental Health and Resilience within the Disability Community During COVID-19” – explore the mental health and resilience of people with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic and ways service providers can access relevant resources  Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021 from 11 a.m. to noon. Register here for “Making Social Media Accessible for… Read More

Roads Services Division receives Public Employer of the Year Award 

On Oct. 27, the Governor’s Committee on Disability Issues and Employment (GCDE) held their 28th annual Governor’s Awards, which recognizes outstanding employers in the public and private sector who recruit, retain and advance individuals with disabilities and demonstrate best practices in the workplace. The Public Employer of the Year Award went to King County Roads Services Division for their dedication and support of Matt Everson, an employee in King County’s Supported Employment Program. This is the first time King County has received the Public Employer of the Year Award and the second… Read More

Disability Employment Etiquette, December 11 

The Council of State Governments (CSG) and the State Exchange on Employment and Disability will present a webinar on “Disability Employment Etiquette” as part of CSG’s 2020 National Conference. The webinar will focus on interacting with people with disabilities and creating inclusive workplaces.  Friday, Dec. 11 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Register here.  Additionally, the Partnership on Employment and Accessible Technology has released “Making Documents Accessible,” a resource to ensure documents are designed so people with and without disabilities can easily access and edit them. View “Making Documents Accessible” here. 

King County Council approves Metro’s Access Paratransit Advisory Committee (APAC) 

Crossposted from Metro Matters  King County Metro is pleased to announce the 11 members of its newest advisory group, the Access Paratransit Advisory Committee (APAC). The Access Paratransit Advisory Committee will advise Metro, the King County Executive, and the King County Council on transit and policy issues related to equitable public transportation for people with disabilities.  The work of this new committee will enhance the Access paratransit program by providing guidance to Metro on what to prioritize and on developing a vision for ongoing improvements. The committee was appointed by the King County… Read More