Success today in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee!

Thank you! You, your colleagues, family and friendsmade a difference with your calls and emails.It’s worth celebrating on our ADA Anniversary: The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted to send the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRPD) to the Senate.There were a few amendments and as soon as we have the final language we’ll send them to you. And, our work isn’t over — we will need your help to make sure that the CRPD is scheduled for a vote and is ratified in the Senate.But for a few moments (and we mean that almost literally), take a deep breath, smile, and enjoy this victory on the way to ratification. You’re the best!  Thank you.

Susan Henderson Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund and David Morrissey, US International Council on Disabilities


Update on Video Descriptions from the Federal Communications Commission

We, the FCC,  have published an encyclopedia page on video description, containing various information and links for consumers, which is located at

In addition, we have prepared a public service announcement (PSA) on video description, in order to help the general public learn about this new service available through the Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CVAA).  The 60-second PSA is an audio file in MP3 format located at

We encourage its redistribution and broadcast in various media channels, including radio stations and audio information services.  Below is a transcript of the recording:


As of July 2012, nine major television networks are making some prime-time and children’s programs more accessible to persons with impaired eyesight.  For about four hours a week, the networks will be providing video description:  an audible narration of a program’s key visual elements, inserted in natural pauses of the dialog.  The description may be accessed by a television’s secondary audio feature, which might be labeled SAP or Spanish — since the feature is sometimes used for a language translation.

To learn about described programs shown in your area, contact your cable or satellite television provider, or your local ABC, CBS, FOX, or NBC station.  To learn about your equipment’s secondary audio feature, contact the vendor or manufacturer.  The Federal Communications Commission’s information on video description is available at, or by calling 1-888-225-5322.


Happy 22nd Anniversary of the ADA! CRPD Mark up in Senate Committee on Foreign Relations Today!

In 1990 President Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act, defining for the first time civil rights for those living with disabilities in the US and territories. This historic legislation was a result of the independent living movement advocacy and has set the stage globally for today’s hearing in the U. S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations to mark up the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). The United Nations General Assembly adopted the CRPD on December 13, 2006 and the USA, President Obama, signed the Tready on June 30, 2009. Today, on the 22 Anniversary of the ADA Senator Kerry is having the CRPD before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for its approval. Another victory for civil rights for all Americans living with disabilities in the USA and abroad. Let Senator Kerry, who has taken on leadership for passage of the CRPD, and your Senators know that on the 22nd Anniversary of the ADA that the CRPD is our right! Happy Birthday ADA.