Commission on Disabilities
The Commission on Disabilities is a five member commission appointed by the Selectboard.
Video Introduction to COD on CH15 TV 15 Video Intro to COD
The Commission is currently doing a survey to help us understand the needs of the community members with disabilities. We are asking for your assistance in the survey. Thank you in advance, here is the link to the survey. COD Survey
To request a paper survey, contact commission chair Susan Dunderdale at (413) 297-7867 or clerk Larry Dubois at (413) 531-9561. Surveys can also be made available in large print.
South Hadley Town Meeting Members approved on Nov. 20, 2019 the creation of a five-member Commission on Disabilities. The Selectboard is the appointing authority. The majority must be persons with disabilities and one may be a member of the immediate family of a person with a disability. In addition, one member must be an elected or appointed municipal official.
The members shall initially serve the following terms: (a.) Two members shall serve one-year terms; (b.) Two members shall serve two-year terms; and (c.) One member shall serve three-year terms. After the initial term, all members shall serve three-year terms. Resignation shall be made by notifying the chairperson in writing and filing with the town clerk.
The Selectboard shall fill any vacancy for the remainder of the unexpired term in the same manner as an original appointment. No member may act on his/her own without prior approval of the Commission.
The officers shall include a chairperson, vice chairperson and secretary. Officers shall be elected annually by the majority vote of the Commission.
Duties: The chairperson shall develop the agenda in coordination with the other officers; preside over all meetings; appoint subcommittees as needed; and authorize expenditures as needed. (The vice chairperson shall perform all the functions of the chairperson in his/her absence.) The secretary shall: Keep records of all meetings attendance, minutes, and correspondence; post notice of all meetings forty-eight (48) hours before each meeting at the Town Clerk’s Office.
Powers & Duties
1. Research, understand, evaluate and advocate local issues, challenges and opportunities encountered by people with disabilities.
2. Coordinate the activities of other local groups organized to meet the needs of people with disabilities.
3. Review and make recommendations about policies, procedures, services and activities of departments and agencies of the Town of South Hadley - as they affect people with disabilities.
4. Work in cooperation with the departments and agencies of the Town of South Hadley - to bring about maximum participation of people with disabilities.
5. Initiate, monitor, and promote legislation at the city, state and federal level which advances the equal status of people with disabilities.
6. Encourage public awareness of disability issues.
7. Provide information and advice to individuals, businesses, organizations and public agencies in all matters pertaining to disability.
8. File an annual report, which shall be printed in the Town report.
9. Receive gifts of property, both real and personal in the name of the Town subject to the approval of the Selectboard or Town Meeting as appropriate.
10. Take such action as the Commission considers appropriate to ensure the equal access status of persons with disabilities.
The Town of South Hadley recently had an ADA Self Evaluation and Transition Plan performed by Center for Living. This report is an essential requirement in respect to numerous grant and program applications for both the federal and state government.
ADA Self Evaluation & Transition Plan
The Town of South Hadley is committed to serving all citizens. We continue to improve our services and website content to make town hall services accessible for everyone. If you are having accessibility issues, please contact Acting ADA Coordinator Matt Cowie at (413) 538-5017 ext 134 or by email here. We will work to accommodate your in-person service request or offer an alternate format / update our website content to make it more accessible to you and others.
MGL Chapter 40 section 8j: https://malegislature.gov/Laws/GeneralLaws/Parti/Titlevii/Chapter40/Section8j