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Boston celebrates anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act

Posted by Jeremy C. Fox  July 26, 2013 05:30 PM

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Isabel Leon/City of Boston

Mayor Thomas M. Menino and Kristen McCosh, the city’s commissioner for persons with disabilities, spoke at the celebration of the third annual Americans with Disabilities Act Day at Boston City Hall.

City officials and Bostonians with disabilities gathered on City Hall Plaza Thursday to celebrate the anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Mayor Thomas M. Menino and Kristen McCosh, the city’s commissioner for persons with disabilities, spoke at the ceremony, which outlined efforts the city has made to improve accessibility to those with limited mobility.

This year marks the 23rd anniversary of the act and the third time the City of Boston has publicly celebrated its anniversary.

“The City of Boston prides itself on fostering a welcoming, inclusive community for all,” Menino said, according to a statement released by the city.

“The impressive work of the disabilities commission demonstrates our dedication to opening up opportunities for people of all abilities in our city,” he said. “There is still more work to be done, but the great steps we have already taken promise a bright future for all of our residents and visitors.”

Menino established the city’s disabilities commission in 1995 to promote complete inclusion for Bostonians with disabilities, the city said.

It includes McCosh, appointed in 2010, and a nine-member advisory board made up of Boston residents who bring neighborhood concerns about accessibility to the city’s attention, it said.

The statement outlined accessibility improvements, including efforts to ensure that wheelchair-accessible taxis comply with federal standards; improving access to sidewalks, emergency shelters, City Hall, and the Freedom Trail; adding audible crossing signals for the visually impaired; creating a voluntary registry where people with special needs can provide information for emergency responders; participating in a national mentoring program for disabled adults; and providing City Hall internships for people with disabilities, several of whom have been hired for full-time positions.

For more information on the Boston Commission for Persons with Disabilities, visit www.cityofboston.gov/disability/.

Jeremy C. Fox can be reached at jeremy.fox@globe.com.
Follow him on Twitter: @jeremycfox.
Follow Downtown on Twitter: @YTDowntown.

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Isabel Leon/City of Boston

City officials and Bostonians with disabilities gathered on City Hall Plaze.

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