County Comment/October is Disabilities Awareness Month

by Norman Bassett
Washington County Public Information Officer

In the Washington County Board of County Commissionersí meeting on October 5th, Commissioner Jim Kercheval presented a proclamation to Members of the Washington County Disability Advisory Committee designating the month of October as Disabilities Awareness Month.
October is Disabilities Awareness Month across the United States, and is a time when government and the private sector take the opportunity to recognize the abilities of all people, regardless of physical or mental limitations.
In Washington County, the Disability Advisory Committee (DAC) to the Board of County Commissioners works to keep the Board aware of issues facing people with disabilities that need county support, and both physical and attitudinal barriers that we can eliminate by working together. Over the past year, the DAC has taken a lead in emergency planning, to provide evacuation options for people with disabilities, in concert with the Washington County Department of Emergency Services, and through membership on state emergency services committees.
Washington County has representation on the Governorís Transportation Consolidation Committee through the DAC and its work with the Maryland Alliance of Disability Commissions. The County Office on Disability Issues has recently reviewed accessibility of Washington County Circuit Court at the request of the Court, to ensure that our judiciary system is open to, and usable by, all people.
The County Commissioners take this opportunity each year to reflect on the contributions people with disabilities make to the community and to renew its pledge to eliminate barriers to full accessibility in programs and activities sponsored by Washington County.
DAC Chair Peggy Martin, and members Jim Wilhide and Sharon Landis accepted the proclamation.