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City of Seattle
Ed Murray, Mayor
NEWS ADVISORY
SUBJECT: Seattle City Council confirms members of new Seattle Commission for People with Disabilities
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
5/24/2010  3:30:00 PM
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Felicia Yearwood (206) 684-4537
Elliott Bronstein  (206) 684-4507


Seattle City Council confirms members of new
Seattle Commission for People with Disabilities

SEATTLE - Seattle City Council has confirmed the first fourteen people who will serve as commissioners on the new Seattle Commission for People with Disabilities.

Mark Adreon, Joshua Caple, Rebecca C. Cory, Charlene Curtiss, Patricia Copeland, John Denooyer, Hope Drummond, Vickie Foster, Laura Gramer, Mary Beth Lum, Erica Sekins, Gary Stobbe, Deborah Witmer, and Sara Woody will serve on the volunteer commission that will advise the Mayor, City Council, and City departments on issues affecting people with disabilities, as well as help to foster understanding between people with disabilities and City government.

"I want to welcome the members of the Commission for People with Disabilities to City government," said Mayor Mike McGinn. "These individuals bring expertise and commitment to the critical issue of disability access and accommodation. I look forward to working with this new Commission to help ensure that the perspectives of people with disabilities will be included in all City of Seattle policies and programs."

Seven commissioners were appointed by the Mayor and seven by Seattle City Council. Commissioners themselves will nominate two additional members, including one person age 18-29 to be appointed in September through the YMCA’s Get Engaged Program. All appointments are subject to City Council confirmation.

The mission of the Seattle Commission for People with Disabilities (SCPWD) is to promote the full participation of people with disabilities in all areas of economic, political, and community life in the City of Seattle. The duties of the Commission include:

  • Informing the Mayor, City Council, and City departments about issues of importance to people with disabilities;
  • Assuring access to City services and facilities;
  • Recommending policies, practices, and legislation to the City in matters affecting the concerns of people with disabilities; and
  • Encouraging understanding among people with various disabilities as well as between people with disabilities and the larger Seattle community.

Nearly forty individuals submitted applications to serve on the Commission. Applications and resumes were reviewed by the Human Rights Commission Disability Task Force and the Seattle Office for Civil Rights (SOCR), which will provide ongoing administrative support to the Commission. SOCR staff conducted interviews with twenty-five candidates.

"This new commission will help inform the Council on our policy decisions with respect to accessibility, accommodations and inclusiveness," said Councilmember Bruce Harrell, Chair of the Energy, Technology and Civil Rights Committee.  "Viewing accessibility through the Race and Social Justice lens will help ensure that all of our citizens are included."

"The ad hoc Committee to Establish a Seattle Disabilities Commission did a tremendous job helping to create this commission," said Julie Nelson, director of the Seattle Office for Civil Rights. "I am really excited to work with the new commissioners as they move forward with their work plan."

SCPWD is not designed to handle individual complaints about accommodation and access for people with disabilities. People who believe they may have been discriminated against on the basis of disability should continue to contact the Seattle Office for Civil Rights directly to discuss their situations. For more information call 206-684-4500 or visit www.seattle.gov/civilrights.

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Seattle Office for Civil Rights

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