Friday, May 22, 2015

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Resources & Links

RCIL serves people of all ages and disabilities, and is a clearinghouse for information and referrals on a full range of disabilities. You may also find answers to some of your questions -- including links to web sites regarding specific disabilities -- in our Disability FAQ. Below you will find a list of other web sites you may find useful. Please let us know if you have any recommendations for sites to include.

Please note: The following links will open a new browser window.

ADA and IT Technical Assistance Centers

The National Center on Accessible Information Technology in Education (AccessIT) at the University of Washington serves to increase access to electronic and information technology for students and employees with disabilities by leading a nationwide effort to incorporate accessibility into policies and practices in the nation's classrooms, computer labs, libraries, offices, and everywhere else where information technology is used in education.


ADAPT is an activist organization focused on promoting services in the community instead of warehousing people with disabilities in institutions and nursing homes. A key player behind much social policy innovation and successful legislation, ADAPT has a long history of organizing in the disability community and using civil disobedience and similar non-violent direct action tactics to achieve its goals. Membership is free -- the only prerequisites are action and interest.

Alliance for Technology Access

RCIL's Library is a member of the national Alliance for Technology Access (ATA), a national nonprofit network of 46 centers/agencies and over 80 developers and vendors of assistive technology, several rehabilitation engineering centers, and university and medical-based programs.

American Association of People with Disabilities

AAPD is a national nonprofit cross-disability member organization dedicated to ensuring economic self-sufficiency and political empowerment for the more than 56 million Americans with disabilities. AAPD works in coalition with other disability organizations for the full implementation and enforcement of disability nondiscrimination laws.

American Foundation for the Blind

The American Foundation for the Blind -- the organization to which Helen Keller devoted her life -- is a national nonprofit whose mission is to ensure that the ten million Americans who are blind or visually impaired enjoy the same rights and opportunities as other citizens.

Association of University Centers on Disabilities

A network of interdisciplinary Centers advancing policy and practice for and with individuals with developmental and other disabilities, their families, and communities. The network promotes the principles of self-determination, family centered care, and cultural competence in disability services and supports throughout the life span.

Center for Disability Rights

The Center for Disability Rights is a not-for-profit, community-based advocacy and service organization for people with all types of disabilities. This Independent Living Center is based in Rochester, NY, with offices in Albany and Geneva.

Center for Research On Women with Disabilities (CROWD)

The Center for Research on Women with Disabilities (CROWD) is a research center that focuses on issues related to health, aging, civil rights, abuse, and independent living. CROWD's purpose is to promote, develop, and disseminate information to expand the life choices of women with disabilities so that they may fully participate in community life. More specifically, researchers develop and evaluate models for interventions to address specific problems affecting women with disabilities.

Center for the Study and Advancement of Disability Policy

The Center for the Study and Advancement of Disability Policy provides public education, leadership development and training, technical assistance and information dissemination, and conducts action-research and analysis of public policy issues affecting individuals with disabilities and their families.

Department of Health and Human Services -- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

The CDC works to identify the causes of birth defects and developmental disabilities, help children to develop and reach their full potential, and promote health and well-being among people of all ages with disabilities. CDC also works to prevent injuries, such as traumatic brain injury, and their resulting disabilities.

Disability Info

Disability Info acts as a central gateway to the federal government's disability-related information and resources. The portal is a directory of government Web links relevant to people with disabilities, their families, employers, service providers and other community members.

Disability Museum

The Disability History Museum's mission is to promote understanding about the historical experience of people with disabilities by recovering, chronicling, and interpreting their stories. The web site is home to a searchable, theme-based digital collection of documents and images related to disability history in the United States.

Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund

Founded in 1979 by people with disabilities and parents of children with disabilities, the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund, Inc. is a national law and policy center dedicated to protecting and advancing the civil rights of people with disabilities through legislation, litigation, advocacy, technical assistance, and education and training of attorneys, advocates, persons with disabilities, and parents of children with disabilities.

Disability Statistics Center

The Disability Statistics Center produces and disseminates policy-relevant statistical information on the demographics and status of people with disabilities in American society. The Center's work focuses on how that status is changing over time with regard to employment, access to technology, health care, community-based services, and other aspects of independent living and participation in society.

Disability World

A new web-zine dedicated to advancing an exchange of information and research about the international independent living movement of people with disabilities, Disability World is a bimonthly web-zine of international disability news and views.

Employment and Disability Institute

The Employment and Disability Institute at Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations conducts research and provides continuing education and technical assistance on many aspects of disability in the workplace.

Half the Planet

Calling itself "the most comprehensive disability resource on the web, created by people with disabilities for people whose lives are touched by disability," the Half the Planet web site is currently operated as a program of HalfthePlanet Foundation, which supports the application of technology to promote the values of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) -- independent living, social inclusion, equality of opportunity, economic self-sufficiency, and empowerment.

Independent Living Research Utilization

The ILRU (Independent Living Research Utilization) program is a national center for information, training, research, and technical assistance in independent living. Its goal is to expand the body of knowledge on independent living and to improve utilization of results of research programs and demonstration projects in this field.

Lighthouse International

Lighthouse International is a leading resource worldwide on vision impairment and vision rehabilitation. Through its pioneering work in vision rehabilitation services, education, research and advocacy, Lighthouse International enables people of all ages who are blind or partially sighted to lead independent and productive lives.

Lions Hearing Conservation Society of MD20-Y2

The Lions Hearing Conservation Society of District 20-Y2 was founded in 1975 and is funded through annual donations from individual Lions and Lioness Clubs. The first Lions Loan-Out Center offering assistive listening and alerting devices was established in 1987 in Glens Falls. Today, they provide ongoing support to eight Loan-Out Centers: Albany, Glens Falls, Rotterdam, Saratoga Springs, Troy, and all three RCIL offices in Utica, Herkimer, and Amsterdam.

National Association Councils on Developmental Disabilities

The Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act (DD Act) states that the purpose of State Councils is to "engage in advocacy, capacity building, and systemic change activities that are consistent with the purpose of the DD Act and contribute to a coordinated, consumer and family-centered, consumer and family-directed, comprehensive system of community services, individualized supports and other forms of assistance that enable individuals with developmental disabilities to exercise self-determination, be independent, be productive and be integrated and included in all facets of community life."

National Association of Protection and Advocacy Systems

The Protection and Advocacy (P&As) Systems and Client Assistance Programs (CAPs) comprise the nationwide network of congressionally mandated, legally based disability rights agencies. NAPAS is the voluntary national membership association of the P&As and CAPs, and it assumes leadership in promoting and strengthening the role and performance of its members in providing quality legally based advocacy services.

National Down Syndrome Congress

It is the mission of the National Down Syndrome Congress to be the national advocacy organization for Down syndrome and to provide leadership in all areas of concern related to persons with Down syndrome. NDSC aims to function as a major source of support and empowerment to persons with Down syndrome and their families, with the purpose of creating a national climate in which all people will recognize and embrace the value and dignity of persons with Down syndrome.

National Center for Learning Disabilities

Works to strengthen public policy initiatives that affect the lives of individuals with learning disabilities. Site includes resources, information, fact sheets, and legislative updates.

National Organization on Disability

The mission of the National Organization on Disability is to expand the participation and contribution of America's 54 million men, women and children with disabilities in all aspects of life by raising disability awareness through programs and information aimed at closing the participation gaps.

NPR's A Look Back at 'Section 504'

NPR article on the 1977 San Francisco sit-in -- a defining moment in disability rights history, complete with links to news footage and audio.

Senior Service America

Senior AIDES is the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) of Senior Service America and is funded through the U.S. Department of Labor Employment & Training Administration. Senior Service America is a nonprofit organization that provides employment and training opportunities to seniors across the country.


Signup is a membership program that provides sign language interpreters for member physicians and their deaf patients.

Smithsonian Institute Disability Rights Movement Kiosk

A virtual exhibit focused on the Disability Rights Movement.

Ticket to Work Program

The Ticket to Work and Self-Sufficiency Program is an employment program for people with disabilities who are interested in going to work. The goal of the Ticket Program is to increase opportunities and choices for Social Security disability beneficiaries to obtain employment, vocational rehabilitation, and other support services from public and private providers, employers, and other organizations.

United Spinal Association

Formerly the Eastern Paralyzed Veterans Association, United Spinal Association's mission has broadened in scope and will now include all Americans with Spinal Cord Impairment, including spinal cord injury and diseases such as multiple sclerosis, poliomyelitis, or Lou Gehrig's disease.

U.S. Access Board

The Access Board is an independent Federal agency devoted to accessibility for people with disabilities. Key responsibilities include developing and maintaining accessibility requirements for the built environment, transit vehicles, telecommunications equipment, and for electronic and information technology; providing technical assistance and training on these guidelines and standards; and enforcing accessibility standards for federally funded facilities.

U.S. Business Leadership Network

The US Business Leadership Network (USBLN) is the national organization that supports development and expansion of BLNs across the country, serving as their collective voice. The USBLN recognizes and promotes best practices in hiring, retaining, and marketing to people with disabilities.

U.S. Census Bureau Disability Statistics

The US Bureau of the Census provides data on disability based on three primary sources: the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP), the decennial census of population, and the Current Population Survey (CPS). Site includes research papers, reports, and data from census surveys.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce Resources for Employing Individuals with Disabilities

Undertaken in collaboration with Virginia Commonwealth University, this five-year project focuses on barriers related to the employment of individuals with disabilities. The Center for Workforce Preparation promotes materials regarding related issues and concerns, such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and business tax credits and incentives to 3,000 state and local chambers.

U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services

OSERS supports programs that help educate children and youth with disabilities, provides for the rehabilitation of youth and adults with disabilities and supports research to improve the lives of individuals with disabilities.

U.S. Department of Justice ADA Home Page

Provides information, resources, requirements, and guidelines on a wide variety of topics relating to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

U.S. Department of Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy

ODEP works to increase employment opportunities for adults and youth with disabilities. ODEP focuses on both the supply and demand side of the labor market related to employment of people with disabilities: on the supply side, working to increase opportunities for people with disabilities by expanding access to training, education, employment supports, assistive technology, integrated employment, entrepreneurial development, and small-business opportunities; and on the demand side, building partnerships with employers and state and local agencies to increase awareness of the benefits of hiring people with disabilities, and to facilitate the use of effective strategies.

Work Support

A collaborative effort among schools at Virginia Commonwealth University, the purpose of this center is to identify factors that enhance or inhibit businesses from tapping into a pool of potential employees. Provides a gateway to information, resources, and services regarding the employment of people with disabilities.

Disclaimer: Links to organizations outside of RCIL are included for information only. RCIL has no control over the information at these sites. The views and opinions of these organizations are not necessarily those of RCIL.

Your Resource for Independent Living in Central New York

Social Enterprises

Utica Office

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409 Columbia St.
P.O. Box 210
Utica, NY 13503-0210
Voice (315) 797-4642
TDD (315) 797-5837
Fax (315) 797-4747

The Dorothy Smith Center
for Advocacy at RCIL

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1607 Genesee Street
Utica, NY 13501
Voice (315) 797-4642

Amsterdam Office

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347 West Main Street
Amsterdam, NY 12010
Voice (518) 842-3561
TDD (518) 842-3593
Fax (518) 842-0905

LDA North Country

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Suite 102
210 Court Street
Watertown, NY 13601
Voice (315) 785-9440

Herkimer Office

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Steuben Center
401 E. German St.
Herkimer, NY 13350
Voice (315) 866-7245
TDD (315) 866-7246
Fax (315) 866-7280