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National Council on Disability votes on policy priorities at May meeting

Thursday, May 16, 2024


May 16, 2024

WASHINGTON–The National Council on Disability (NCD) voted on policy proposals for Fiscal Year 2025 during the May 9 Council meeting.

During the virtual meeting, Councilmembers offered several policy project proposals, but selected reports focused on youth with disabilities in nursing homes and autonomous vehicles as the two projects it plans to fund in the next fiscal year.

Councilmembers selected examining disability policy in U.S. territories and Federal Government disability hiring, both tied, as their next highest priorities. Additional proposals offered and discussed included barriers to and within post-secondary education for disabled students and disparities in cancer treatment for people with disabilities.

“All of these projects deserve to be funded,” said NCD Councilmember Theo Braddy, lamenting that it was difficult to cast his vote for his top priorities from the slate offered.

New NCD Chair Gordon gave her first chair report since being designated by President Biden in April. She had been serving as acting chair since late Chairman Andrés Gallegos passed away in December.

“My goal as Chair is to continue to carry forward NCD’s important mission, to drive policy and shape policy and increase access for people with disabilities in all aspects of life,” said Chair Gordon.

She discussed the various updates across the federal government furthering disability policy through recent final rules and NCD’s important role advising policymakers as an independent federal agency.

“The work that we do shapes legislation, policy, work that is done on Capitol Hill, work that makes its way throughout the federal government at a community level,” said Chair Gordon.

In giving an update to NCD’s Health Disparities Framework, Councilmember Risa Rifkind added that NCD was thrilled that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services made history with the release of the final rule updating Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

Councilmember Neil Romano discussed this year’s Progress Report due out in October, as well as providing an update on NCD’s employee tax misclassification project.

“Through NCD’s research, we have found that while many employment laws have evolved to affirm that people with disabilities should have competitive integrated employment opportunities,” said Romano, “the tax code unfortunately has not evolved at the same rate.”

Councilmember Sascha Bittner gave an update on the persistent barriers to inclusion for people with mobility disabilities report.

“This project examines barriers in transportation, recreational facilities, and public rights of way,” explained Bittner.

Councilmembers also discussed current projects on clinical trials, germline editing and tribal lands.

The Council received a presentation by the Intertribal Disability Advisory Council (IDAC) on living with a disability on tribal lands. NCD’s upcoming report will focus on this issue.

The public had an opportunity to present public comment on experiences with recreation facilities, rental vehicle and shuttle accessibility. NCD Councilmember Emily Voorde moderated the session and information received will go into the mobility disabilities report.

Video of the meeting will soon be available on the Council’s YouTube channel.

The next meeting is scheduled for June 27 on Zoomgov. More information is available on


An official website of the National Council on Disability