State Assembly Passes Disabilities Awareness Day Legislative Package

J.M. Lesinski
A shot of paths in Stiglmeier Park in Cheektowaga, New York.Photo by J.M. Lesinski

The New York State Assembly recently passed a legislative package aimed at improving the lives of New Yorkers with disabilities in observance of Legislative Disabilities Awareness Day.

“Every year we come together on Legislative Disabilities Awareness Day to not just raise awareness of the struggles of those living with disabilities, but to pass meaningful legislation to address the challenges they face,” Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie remarked of the legislation. “We will continue working to fight against the harmful prejudices still prevalent in our society, and to ensure these New Yorkers have access to the resources and services they need.”

Bills included in the package would establish a commission to streamline processes and services for individuals with disabilities, establish the Commission on the Deaf, Deafblind and Hard of Hearing for a more centralized state and government resource location, and a small business tax credit for employment of people with disabilities.

“New York must support people with disabilities who have a right to live a good, quality life. This year’s Disability Awareness Day marks a turning point in New York. Our budget – for the first time in a long time – and our legislation recognize the potential of people with disabilities and the benefits we all gain from helping them overcome their challenges,” stated People with Disabilities Committee Chair Thomas J. Abinanti of the legislative package.

Other bills included will enhance access to employment opportunities to individuals with disabilities and veterans, establish a public awareness program to combat disability stigmas, and provide students with disabilities better tools for success.

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I have worked as a professional journalist for over five years now, covering the arts, music, food, politics, and culture up and down both coasts of the United States. I have a B.A. in English from SUNY Fredonia with minors in Psychology and Creative Writing, as well as an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from California State University, Fresno.

Buffalo, NY

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