Onorato Announces ADA 20th Anniversary Celebration

Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato today announced a special celebration marking the 20th Anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The community forum and street festival will take place on Monday, July 26, at Station Square and is hosted by the Allegheny County Department of Human Services (DHS), in conjunction with United Cerebral Palsy/CLASS, Three Rivers Center for Independent Living, City-County Task Force on Disabilities and Consumer Health Coalition.

“The Americans with Disabilities Act has led to greater access and inclusion for people with disabilities throughout our nation and region, and on Monday, we celebrate the ADA’s successes,” said Onorato. “Allegheny County will continue to work through our Department of Human Services and non-profit organizations to improve accessibility throughout our region.”

Monday’s anniversary celebration will begin with a community forum at 1:30 p.m. in the Admiral Room of the Sheraton at Station Square. The forum will focus on the celebration of disability-related accomplishments and recognize past and future leaders. Three Rivers Center for Independent Living President & CEO Stan Holbrook will deliver the keynote address entitled “Forging a New Freedom: Local Response to National ‘Calling on America’ Campaign.” Allegheny County Disability Connection Director Judith Barricella will present the Disability Agenda.

“We commend our Disability Connection and its many partners for the work that has been done,” said DHS Director Marc Cherna. “They have persisted, with much success, to foster a culture of dignity and independence for people with disabilities in Allegheny County. Through them, we’ve realized many positive changes that are cause for celebration, but our work is not over.”

A panel discussion honoring the accomplishments of the first 20 years of the ADA will also be part of the community forum and will feature Disability Rights Network Staff Attorney Paul O’Hanlon, United Cerebral Palsy/CLASS CEO Al Condeluci, ACCESS Transportation Executive Director Karen Hoesch, and ADA Inc. President & CEO Joan Stein.

Those planning to attend the forum are asked to RSVP to judith.barricella@alleghenycounty.us or 412-350-2769. Please let Judith know if any special accommodations need to be made.

A street festival with food, live music, dancing and other entertainment will follow the community forum from 5:00 until 8:00 p.m. in Bessemer Court at Station Square.