Flatten Inaccessibility report cover - dark blue background with white text and a montage of photos. Research report September 2020, Impact of COVID-19 on Blind and Visually Impaired Adults in the United StatesAFB is immensely proud to release the report on the findings of the Flatten Inaccessibility Study.

The American Foundation for the Blind's Public Policy and Research Institute, working in coalition with the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities, wrote to the National Governors Association to express the needs of public transportation users with disabilities as states across the country implement reopening policies.

Last week, the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions held a hearing on returning to K-12 schools safely. Considering that students with disabilities are often left out of the conversation, it was exciting to hear that they were considered in multiple lines of questioning presented by the witnesses and the Senators themselves. From the witnesses, we learned that educators are deeply concerned about the digital divide, the health and safety of students and educators, and delivering high quality academics while making up for lost learning.

As schools around the country navigate how and when students might safely be able to return to school, given the COVID-19 pandemic, the American Foundation for the Blind encourages legislators, educators, administrators, superintendents, and parents to ask the following questions:

On May 8, 2020, the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) and the American Council of the Blind (ACB) joined forces with eight other national organizations to pen a letter to the Chairs and the Ranking Members of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pension and the House Committee on Education and Labor. The letter is a request to Congress to continue supporting children who are blind or have low vision by opposing waivers that would affect the services that children receive and by providing additional funding to support students’ access to their education.

During this national period of quarantine due to the novel coronavirus, many US schools have instituted distance learning programs that allow students to continue their education at home. This change should prevent students from losing important academic skills—for example, in reading and math—and ensure that they are prepared to advance to the following grade in the fall.

Each year, the United States’ two national consumer groups of people who are blind and low vision come to Washington, DC, to meet with members of Congress and advocate for policy changes that would improve the lives of blind and low vision Americans. The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) held its annual Washington Seminar from February 10-13. The American Council of the Blind (ACB) will be hosting its annual DC Leadership Meetings from February 22-25.

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). Throughout this month, corporations and other organizations renew and refocus their commitments to addressing the barriers that face Americans with disabilities in the workforce.

As we celebrate the 29th Anniversary of the ADA, AFB is pleased that Representatives Jim Langevin and Donald McEachin and Senator Tammy Duckworth have led the reintroduction of the Disabled Access Credit Expansion Act.

On July 26, 2019, the United States will mark the 29th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the primary civil rights law protecting the rights of disabled Americans and one of the most comprehensive pieces of disability non-discrimination law in the world. AFB celebrates the tremendous progress our society has made toward equity in the past 29 years, but we also recognize that many barriers still remain.