Title Date

Happy Holidays from Access Living

See You in 2019

Access Living will be closed through January 1. We will re-open for regular business hours on Wednesday, January 2.

Court Rules Lawsuit Against Uber for ADA Violations Can Continue

Holding Rideshare Companies to ADA Will Expand Access to Underserved Population

CHICAGO - Judge Manish S. Shah of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, issued a decision Monday allowing a lawsuit to proceed against Uber Technologies, Inc. for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

2018 Chicago Mayoral Candidates Disability Forum

Transcript / Realtime File

Read the full unedited transcript of the 2019 Chicago Mayoral Candidates Disability Forum

Welcome to the Chicago Mayoral Candidates Disability Forum!

As the race for Chicago’s Mayor ramps up, Chicago-based Access Living, will host a forum for candidates. The event will feature questions submitted by voters focused on the candidates’ experience with disability rights, laws and access enforcement; plans for the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities; increasing access to healthcare, transportation and education, and creating a welcoming and accessible city.

Access Living, 10 Advocacy Organizations Sponsor
Chicago Mayoral Candidate Forum

12 Candidates to Join Event Featuring Questions from Disability Voters

CHICAGO - As the 2019 race for Chicago’s Mayor gears up, Chicago-based Access Living and ten community partners will host a candidates’ forum from 3-6 p.m. today at Access Living focused on disability.

2018 Disability Candidates Forum for the Chicago Mayor’s Race

Candidates Written Responses

The candidate responses to 20 written questions were compiled and organized by question below. These questions were submitted by Chicago disability voters through an online survey hosted by Access Living in September 2018.

Chicago Mayoral candidates commit city to spending required to correct disability discrimination in Affordable Housing Program

Daley no-show for hard questions from disability community

CHICAGO – Candidates for Mayor of Chicago today committed to spending whatever is required to correct decades of discrimination against people with disabilities in the City’s Affordable Housing Program. Ten candidates addressed questions about housing, transit, health care, criminal justice, employment, education and immigrant services in a forum today hosted by Access Living and ten community partners.
2018 Annual Report Cover

2018 Access Living Annual Report

Since 1980, we’ve challenged disability stereotypes, protected civil rights, and championed social reforms earning national recognition as a leading force in the disability community.


The Advocates Group

The Advocates issued this survey to examine the current situation in the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) special education program under the supervision of the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and its Monitor. In May 2018 the ISBE found CPS’ policies violated special education law and subsequently appointed a monitor to oversee the district’s special education program for the next three years and carry out the agency’s corrective actions. We hope ISBE finds these survey results to be a helpful indicator of the current status of ISBE’s monitoring for further improvements. A total of 800 parents, teachers, students, and other stakeholders took the survey from September 24, 2018 to October 12, 2018.

ISBE and CPS Far Behind Schedule to Reform Special Education, Advocates appeal to Pritzker to fix the problems

Teachers say CPS has not fixed problems; parents still in the dark about ISBE findings and students’ right to compensation

CHICAGO—Six months after the state nominally took control of special education in Chicago Public Schools (CPS), the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) is still failing to bring the promised changes to students with disabilities, according to results of a new parent/teacher survey.

Fall 2018 CPS Special Education Issues

Advocates continue to hear that problems with special education service persist. Please provide the Advocates Group with up–to–date information about your experiences this school year.

Otoño 2018 Problemas de Educación Especial en las Escuelas Públicas de Chicago (CPS)

Defensores continúan oyendo que los problemas con los servicios de educación especial persisten. Por favor de dar al Grupo de Defensores información actual sobre sus experiencias este año escolar.
2018 Sip & Savor

2018 Sip & Savor Fall Fundraiser

Join us for red wine tasting and some sweet and savory fall treats as we celebrate Access Living’s youth employment program. All proceeds go towards operating support for Access Living’s programs and services.
Marca Bristo

Access Living CEO Marca Bristo on the 28th Anniversary of the ADA

Today is the 28th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) — the landmark legislation that affirms people with disabilities have equal rights under the law. George H Bush signed it after disability advocates demanded better… better access, better education, better jobs.

Access Living releases disability rights analysis of CPS FY 2019 Budget

Budget doesn’t adequately impact documented special ed violations

CHICAGO – July 23, 2018 -- Today Access Living published its annual review of the Chicago Public Schools budget for the FY2019 year. Access Living once again calls for a strategic reconsideration of how CPS will resolve issues affecting students with disabilities, with the view that resolving many of these issues can help stabilize the overall education climate in CPS.

CTA Announces All Stations Accessible Program (ASAP)

Access Living President and CEO Marca Briston Comments on the Program

We are glad to see the CTA go beyond minimal compliance to universal accessibility of the system. It’s not only the right thing to do but it makes economic sense.

Access Living sues City of Chicago for three decades of discrimination against people with disabilities in Affordable Rental Housing Program

Complaint in Federal Court affects more than 650 developments, 50,000 housing units

Access Living of Metropolitan Chicago, a Center for Independent Living (CIL) and advocate for people with disabilities, filed suit in the U.S. District Court for Northern District of Illinois, alleging the City of Chicago has funded and developed tens of thousands of affordable rental housing units without ensuring that a sufficient number are accessible to people with disabilities as required by federal law.

New Survey Shows CPS Special Ed Problems Continue Despite ISBE Probe

Parents, teachers say CPS hasn’t fixed problems, independent monitoring team needed to oversee program and protect students

Despite claims that Chicago Public Schools (CPS) has fixed the special ed problems at issue in a state probe, the vast majority of parents and teachers responding to a new survey say they continue to experience the same delays, denials and roadblocks in obtaining services for students that prompted the state investigation in the first place.

Systemic Problems with CPS Special Ed

Advocates Respond to ISBE Findings on CPS Special Education Policies and Practices

Today advocates welcomed the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) findings of systematic problems in Chicago Public Schools (CPS) provision of services to students with disabilities.

Tell Your US Senators: No on HR 620

Share Your Stories of Discrimination at Public Businesses!

On February 15, the U.S. House passed HR 620, the so-called "ADA Education and reform Act of 2017." Now, the fight to protect our civil rights turns the the U.S. Senate. Please take a moment to contact your U.S. Senators and tell them two things...tell them to oppose HR 620, and share a story about a time when you experienced disability discrimination in a place of public business. Use the easy form to do this, but please note that you will need to put in your personal story before sending the letter. Share this action alert with your friends and family too!
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