Disability Focus Group Opportunity in the Austin Area

Travis and Williamson counties, which include the cities of Austin, Pflugerville, and Round Rock, are collaborating on a regional housing and economic opportunity study. They’ve hired BBC Research & Consulting to do the assessment. Disability Rights Texas has been asked to host a focus group session specifically for people with disabilities.

Event Information:
Location: Disability Rights Texas, 2222 W Braker Lane, Austin, TX 78758
Date: Tuesday, September 11th, 2018
Time 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM (1.5 hours)
Lunch will be provided.

If you’d like to participate, click here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeslzsQ8lFceS9ZRH8Etrhak4GM_T53ss4y8ZX2MNtJ33SUEQ/viewform

Seniors Without Walls

Seniors Without Walls is a free telephone and web-based service that offers a wealth of programs for persons aged 60 and older. More than 70 programs are available, in categories such as fun and games, conversation, languages, philosophy and religion, meditation, arts, reading, writing, special interest, supportive groups, health and wellness, etc. A few groups are available in Spanish. Sessions run from thirty minutes to an hour. Seniors Without Walls is a California-based program that now has more than 1000 participants in 35 states. The service is a great resource for seniors wanting phone and online interaction, continuing education, and entertainment.

For more information, please call 877-797-7299 (9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pacific time) or visit www.seniorswithoutwalls.org

#SidebySideTX–Celebrate Developmental Disabilities Month

There’s only a few days left in the month of March, but still time to participate in the #SidebySideTX social media to celebrate Developmental Disabilities month. Here’s what you do:
1. Use your phone or camera to take a photo or short video of you and another person or a group of people participating in activities in your community, side-by-side.
2. Add the photo or video to your favorite social media site (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.).
3. Include the hashtag #SideBySideTX and post your photo or video.
For more information about the campaign, visit http://www.tcdd.texas.gov/resources/side-by-side-texas/

Transportation Survey Available for A Limited Time

The Texas A&M Transportation Institute has an online survey available for the next few weeks. This survey is intended for persons with visual impairments to learn more about their transportation needs, and what types of transportation they currently use. The survey takes about fifteen minutes to complete.

This mobility needs survey is available at: https://goo.gl/JSBbtE

Upcoming Webinar About Transportation August 15th, 2017

The Texas State Independent Living Council is hosting a virtual conversation about TNC’s – Transportation Network Companies – also know as ride sharing companies. Ride sharing is becoming very popular and increasingly necessary in large cities like Dallas, Houston, Austin, and San Antonio.

This webinar is free, and will take place on Tuesday, August 15th, from 2 – 3 pm Central Time. To register, please visit: https://events-na1.adobeconnect.com/content/connect/c1/2336834197/en/events/event/shared/default_template/event_registration.html?sco-id=2339069869&_charset_=utf-8

People with disabilities, their families, caregivers, and professionals in the field of disability are invited to attend.

2017 NDEAM Poster Art Competition: Deadline 5/31/17

Each year the Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities features an art competition for National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). The poster is distributed free to the public and businesses. The artwork must be an original composition created by a Texan with a disability.

For more information about this competition, including the entry form and submission guidelines, please click here: http://gov.texas.gov/disabilities/ndeam/ndeam_poster/

The deadline for submissions is May 31, 2017. The winner will be announced on June 21, 2017. The winner will also be a special guest at the annual Lex Frieden Employment Awards ceremony in October.

There is no fee to enter this competition.

State Independent Living Council Virtual Conversations

The Texas State Independent Living Council (SILC) will be hosting a series of virtual conversations on various topics related to independent living.

The first webinar will be on Friday, May 5th, from 2 – 3 pm Central time, and will feature a discussion about emergency preparedness. The presenters for this webinar will be Ron Lucey, Executive Director of the Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities, and Danielle Hesse with the Texas Disability Task Force on Emergency Management.

This virtual discussion is free and open to the public. To register, please click on the following link: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3309752482715138307

Topics for future virtual conversations in this series have not yet been announced.

Upcoming Events: AFB Center on Vision Loss

Here are three upcoming events sponsored by the AFB Center on Vision Loss in Dallas:

1) The seminar entitled: Balance: Getting Back to Basics has been re-scheduled.
New date: Thursday, April 20th
Time: noon – 3 pm
Location: AFB Center on Vision Loss, 11030 Ables Lane in Dallas
RSVP to: Neva Fairchild at neva@afb.net or call 214-438-5316
Lunch will be provided.

2) The Balance Intervention Study has also been re-scheduled
New dates: Thursday, April 20th, or Friday, April 21st, by appointment, for pre-test assessments
Location: AFB Center on Vision Loss, 11030 Ables Lane in Dallas
Contact: Neva Fairchild at neva@afb.net or 214-438-5316
This study consists of a 12 week training program designed for individuals who are 55 years or older and have vision loss. Study participants will have access to balance equipment and Tai Chi classes. Pre and post tests will be conducted.

3) Free self-defense class for the visually-impaired community
Date: Friday, April 28th
Time: 10 am
Location: Grand Room, Sedona Village Senior Living, 2800 Sedona Ranch Drive in Fort Worth
RSVP to: Terry at 940-206-6829
This specialized class is specifically for individuals who use white canes.

Low Vision Seminar in Dallas on February 25th

The Foundation Fighting Blindness is hosting a free seminar for persons interested in learning about age-related Macular Degeneration, Retinitis Pigmentosa, and related disorders. Seating is limited. A continental breakfast will be provided. In addition to sessions, vendors will be available to promote low vision services and products.

Here is the pertinent information:
Date: Saturday, February 25
Time: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Location: Best Western Plus Dallas Hotel & Conference Center
8051 Lyndon B. Johnson Freeway
Dallas, TX 75251
Advanced Registration: 800-647-0008 or http://www.FightBlindness.org/DallasFortWorthSeminar

Texas Workforce Commission Stakeholder Meetings

The Texas Workforce Commission will hold a series of meetings in various cities to allow public comments regarding the proposal to merge blind vocational rehabilitation services with general rehabilitation services. Here is a list of the meeting dates, times, and locations:

Monday, January 9 – Austin, 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Texas Workforce Commission
101 E. 15th Street, 244
Austin, TX 78701

Thursday, January 12 – Harlingen, 2 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Texas State Technical College Cultural Arts Center
1825 North Loop 499
Harlingen, TX 78550

Friday, January 13 – Houston, 9:30 a.m. – 11 a.m.
United Way Houston Community Resource Center
50 Waugh Drive
Houston, TX 77007

Thursday, January 19 – Lubbock, 12:30 p.m. – 2 p.m.
Workforce Solutions South Plains Workforce Development Board
1301 Broadway, Basement Level Conference Room
Lubbock, TX 79401

Friday, January 20 – Dallas, 9:30 a.m. – 11 a.m.
Dallas County El Centro College – Bill J. Priest Campus, Room 1530
1402 N. Corinth St.
Dallas, TX 75215

Interested persons are invited to attend these meetings and provide public comment. In addition, written comments will be accepted until January 27th. Written comments may be e-mailed to: TWCPolicyComments@twc.state.tx.us or mailed to: TWC Policy Comments, Workforce Policy and Service Delivery, Attn.: Workforce Editing, 101 East 15th St., Rm. 440T, Austin, Texas 78778.

Questions about these scheduled meetings may be directed to the Texas Workforce Commission at 512-463-8942.