State, Local & Other News

DOJ settles with SC police department in accessibility suit

Thursday, May 12, 2016
Handcuffing in front will allow a detainee to sign or write
The police department of South Carolina’s largest city announced a comprehensive settlement with the Department of Justice on May 3, to ensure effective communication with people who are deaf…

Lawsuit challenges police treatment of deaf individual

Friday, May 6, 2016The ACLU of Rhode Island and the Rhode Island Disability Law Center sued the city of Woonsocket, Rhode Island on April 27 regarding its police department’s treatment of a deaf individual. “Municipal compliance with federal and state laws prohibiting disability…

Florida newspapers win Pulitzer Prize for investigation of Florida mental health system

Tuesday, April 26, 2016
Investigative journalism award for reporting on Florida psychiatric hospitals
The Tampa Bay Times and Saratoga Herald-Tribune were awarded the Pulitzer Prize for investigative journalism April 18 for its year-long investigation into Florida’s network of state-run mental health hospitals. “…

Florida passes bill to protect people with autism when being interviewed by the police

Monday, April 18, 2016Florida will soon become the first state to implement protections for people with autism spectrum disorders in police interrogations. Under the Wes Kleinert Fair Interview Act [PDF], signed by Governor Rick Scott on April 1, people with ASD will…

Lawsuit targets New Orleans bus stops

Monday, April 11, 2016
94% of bus stops in New Orleans have barriers to accessibility
Almost all bus stops in New Orleans impose accessibility barriers to people with mobility disabilities, a new class-action lawsuit asserts, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern…

Lawsuit tackles Ohio residential and employment segregation

Tuesday, April 5, 2016
Home-Based Services
Disability Rights Ohio, the Center for Public Representation, Sidley Austin LLP and attorney Samuel Bagenstos hit the state of Ohio with a class-action lawsuit [PDF] March 31, accusing it of unnecessarily institutionalizing thousands of people with…

Abortion disability discrimination bill signed into law

Thursday, March 31, 2016
News from Indiana
Indiana Governor Mike Pence (R) signed a comprehensive anti-abortion bill into law March 24, which, among other things, would prohibit disability discrimination in abortion decisions. “I believe that a society can be judged by how it deals…

Accessibility front and center in major Baltimore housing discrimination agreement

Tuesday, March 29, 2016
Accessible Housing in Baltimore County
Baltimore County announced a comprehensive settlement with the Department of Housing and Urban Development and a coalition of civil rights groups March 15, agreeing to expand the city’s affordable housing stock and undertake a variety…

Housing developer to pay $350,000 over accessibility violations

Friday, March 25, 2016
Housing Developer Agrees to ‘Retrofit’ for Accessibility
A federal court signed off on a comprehensive settlement March 9 with the Department of Justice and an Alabama-based housing developer accused of building more than 2,500 inaccessible housing units in four states.…

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