Communicating About Disability

Open to the public, webinar will be held Sept. 15
Friday, August 28, 2015

A free webinar, “Reporting Clearly and Accurately about Disability,” will be sponsored Sept. 15 by the ILR School and three organizations that provide information to the public about the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Experts from the Northeast ADA Center, the Great Lakes ADA Center and the ADA National Network will join panelists in providing tips and insight on clear and accurate disability coverage.

The 2 to 3:30 p.m. EST webinar is designed for media and other communications professionals, but the public is welcome to attend.

The Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in employment, transportation, public accommodation, communications and governmental activities.

The law went into effect in 1990. An estimated 12.6 percent of Americans live with a disability.

Webinar moderator Hannah Rudstam of the Northeast ADA Center, located in the K. Lisa Yang and Hock E. Tan Employment and Disability Institute at Cornell ILR, said disability is quickly becoming “the new diversity.”

As awareness emerges about disability issues, there is an increasing demand for respectful and effective reporting about disability in the media, she said.

The webinar will provide tips that can be used immediately, and deeper discussion of disability portrayals.

The webinar begins with a 30-minute overview focused on key points to keep in mind when reporting on disability.

The webinar’s second part is a 60-minute discussion about disability reporting by communicators and professionals in the disability field.

Attendees can choose to attend the entire webinar or only one part. Both sessions will be captioned.

Panelists are:

  • John Robinson, CEO, Our Ability, Inc.
  • Allison Weiner Heinemann, Disability Studies faculty, Cornell ILR  
  • Hannah Rudstam, Northeast ADA Center, Cornell ILR
  • Peter Quinn, multimedia editor, Cornell ILR
  • Dot Marinaccio, business relations coordinator, NYS ACCES-VR
  • Wendy Strobel Gower, project director, Northeast ADA Center, Cornell ILR
  • Robin Jones, project director, Great Lakes ADA Center, Chicago, Ill.
  • Mary Catt, assistant director, communications, Cornell ILR  

Registration is at An account at this website is required before registration can be completed.
Registration and session queries can be directed to 877-232-1990 (V/TTY) or by email to

More information about regional ADA centers is available by calling 1-800-949-4232 (V/TTY) or by going to