The Milford Commission on Disability

The Milford Commission on Disability (MCOD) serves as an advisory board to Milford on issues of equal access for individuals with disabilities. Members are appointed by the Board of Selectmen and serve three year terms.

Meeting Schedule: Third Wednesday of every month
Meeting Time: 7:00 pm
Location: Milford Senior Center, 60 N Bow St, Milford, MA

The Commission is also a resource for individuals with disabilities regarding employment, programs and services provided by state and local governments, goods and services provided by private companies, and access to commercial facilities.

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Milford Signs Agreement With State

milforddailynews_logoMILFORD – The town became the 241st municipality in Massachusetts to sign a Community Compact agreement with the state, which is intended to improve the town’s technology and handicapped access to buildings.

Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito was on hand to sign the agreement with selectmen Monday at Town Hall. 

Polito praised Milford’s selectmen and state legislators for their tireless work in pushing for local funding, which should become easier with the agreement in place.

The program is voluntary, and more importantly, “it’s funded,” Polito said.

The Community Compact program began with Gov. Charlie Baker’s first executive orders in 2015, which is intended to provide funding and resources for specific initiatives to help improve cities and towns.


Milford has a well-documented problem with technology, and the agreement is intended to provide funding and resources to improve residents’ access to information, including a revamping of the town’s website. The town also hopes to tackle security issues as well.

According to Polito, the town is the first to sign a Community Compact for Americans with Disabilities Act compliance.

“That really shows how proactive you are as a community,” she said.

David D’Archangelo, director of the Massachusetts Office on Disability, praised the town for signing on to improve access for disabled residents.

 He said the ADA required local governments to have a transition plan by 1993.
 “Here we are in 2016 and not many local and state governments have that,” he said.

State legislators, including Sen. Ryan Fattman, R-Webster, and Rep. John Fernandes, D-Milford, also spoke about the importance of a connection between local and state governments.

Polito once served on the Shrewsbury Board of Selectmen, and Baker the same post in Swampscott.

Fattman said all but one town in his district has signed a Community Compact, which he said highlights “the importance of the partnership” between local and state government.

“Overall, it’s a great program and I’m proud to be here and proud to support it,” he said.

Fernandes praised Baker and Polito’s leadership in working to connect with municipalities.

“It’s really where the rubber hits the road in the partnership,” he said.

Zachary Comeau can be reached at 508-634-7556 and Follow him on Twitter @ZComeau_MDN.

Milford Daily News November 16, 2016. 

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Abilities Expo Boston is Back and Better than Ever
Life-enhancing products to increase you independence. Info-packed workshops. Fun activities for kids, grandparents and everyone in between. Admission is free so don’t miss it!
Register Today!
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FCC Adopts Landmark Agreement to Improve Access to Hearing Aid Compatible Cell Phones and Wireless Devices

Aug 10 2016

On August 4, 2016, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted new rules to ensure people with hearing loss have full access to wireless devices. As the FCC noted, the action taken “will modernize existing hearing aid compatibility (HAC) rules while maintaining the balance between fostering accessibility and promoting innovation and investment.”

Upon the adoption of the rules, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said in his statement, “One area where the Commission has made significant progress in making sure accessibility is baked into new technology is hearing aid compatibility for new mobile devices. Today we take another step toward the day when Americans with hearing loss can access the same range of wireless handsets as anyone else.”

The new rules will require manufacturers and service providers to make more HAC phones available to consumers:

  • 66 percent of offered handset models must be compliant within two years for manufacturers of handsets, with additional time for service providers.
  • 85 percent of handsets must be compliant within five years for manufacturers, again with additional time for service providers.

The FCC reported that it “reconfirms its commitment to pursuing 100 percent compatibility within eight years.” Chairman Wheeler stated, “To be clear, we expect to require 100 percent compliance.”

FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn noted, “I know I am in good company in saying that I look forward to the day when all Americans who use hearing aids have the same options as everyone else when purchasing a mobile phone.”

HLAA was intimately involved in the collaborative effort that led to the groundbreaking consensus lettersigned by industry representatives: CTIA, the Competitive Carriers Association (CCA), the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA), and consumer organizations: HLAA, Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Inc. (TDI), and the National Association of the Deaf (NAD).

HLAA would like to thank all the parties to the consensus proposal for their willingness to compromise and their commitment to finding a way to reach the goal of 100 percent HAC phones. We are thrilled to see our hard work codified into rules.

HLAA is also grateful for the efforts of FCC Commission staff, Chairman Wheeler and all the Commissioners in taking the consensus proposal from an idea to reality by drafting and adopting these updated HAC rules.

FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel said in her remarks supporting the new rules, “Hearing loss is a big deal.” All of us at HLAA – members, staff and board alike, know only too well how true those words are. These new rules will give those of us with hearing loss greater access to mainstream products and services, thus giving us more tools to live well with hearing loss.

HLAA, along with the other organizations involved in the initiative, issued a joint statement regarding the agreement.

Read the FCC press release.

Read the FCC report.

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Second Public Bus Transportation Open Forum

Tuesday, April 26th 6-8pm  Milford Town Library Granite & Quarry Rooms

The Town of Milford is reviewing a proposal for Public Bus Transportation through the Metrowest Regional Transit Authority (MWRTA). 2a20340d9a4ec8699f922f7a5dbe75d.jpgYou are invited to attend this second public bus transportation open forum to listen to details of the proposal and to provide your input and feedback.  Information shared will include a proposed route with bus stops. Town officials, department heads, and representatives from MWRTA will be available to answer questions. flyer-English , flyer-Portuguese, flyer–Spanish

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Claims for Compensation Under Historic Settlement Between DOJ and Greyhound May Now Be Filed

adaA claims process is now available to compensate people who experienced disability discrimination while traveling or attempting to travel on Greyhound.  The claims process is part of a consent decree that resolves nationwide Americans with Disabilities Act discrimination claims brought by the Justice Department.  Greyhound Lines, Inc. has hired a Claims Administrator to distribute an uncapped amount of compensation to people who experienced disability discrimination while traveling or attempting to travel on Greyhound. 

Individuals eligible for compensation must:

  • have a disability;
  • have traveled or attempted to travel on Greyhound between February 8, 2013, and February 8, 2016;
  • experienced a disability-related incident during the travel or attempted travel (for example, lack of accessible transportation or transportation-related services, Greyhound’s failure to make disability-related accommodations, etc.); and
  • submit a Claim Form by mail, email, or online, to the Claims Administrator by no later than November 10, 2016

Instructions regarding the claims process are available at the Claims Administrator’s website.  The Claims Administrator can also be reached by email, by telephone, toll-free at 844-502-5953or 800-659-2656 (TTY), or by mail at U.S. v. Greyhound Claims Administrator, c/o Class Action Administration LLC, PO Box 6878, Broomfield, CO 80021.  Assistance is available from the Claims Administrator for those who are unable to complete the Claim Form due to a disability. 

To learn more about the Department’s lawsuit and settlement with Greyhound that established this claims process, visit the ADA website at

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Milford bike trail to install first path for the blind

By Bill Shaner Daily News Staff Milford Daily Newsmilforddailynews_logo

March 24. 2016 7:19PM

MILFORD – The Upper Charles Bike Trail will have a first-in-the-state feature come August: a designated path for the blind and visually impaired.

The path, starting in the Louisa Lake parking lot, will stretch about three quarters of a mile down along Louisa Lake. It’ll be accompanied by telephone directions and factoids on the history of the area, the geography and a bit about a butterfly garden that exists directly off the trail. The boundaries will be demarcated by several handicap benches and braille signs.

And, it’s free. The Friends of the Upper Charles Trail paid for the project out of leftover funds. It requires nothing from the town’s operating budget, said Harold Rhodes, chairman of the Commission on Disability and orchestrator of the project.

“By far and away, this to me is the most meaningful program that we have done,” said Rhodes to selectmen earlier this week.

The project is the first of its kind for a rail trail bike path in Massachusetts. Its intent is to provide the blind and visually impaired a rare outlet for exercise.

“Persons with low vision really don’t get the ability to exercise. You can imagine how difficult it is. This will be a very safe place,” he said.

Selectmen were all for it.

Board member Bill Buckley asked, “How can we help?”

Just show up on the opening ceremony day, said Rhodes.

“Explain that persons with disabilities as important in this town as persons with non disabilities – that’s the message,” he said.

The Friends of The Upper Charles Trail gave Rhodes and the Commission on Disability the money because making the trail accessible was one of the priorities after the project wrapped up, said Chairman Reno Deluzio.

In getting the project together, Rhodes said many town departments dedicated time and resources.

“This is Milford working together,” he said.

Bill Shaner can be reached at 508-634-7582 or at Follow him on Twitter @bshaner_mdn.

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FCC Strengthens Captioning Rules to Enhance Accessibility to Video Programming on TV

 FCC Strengthens Captioning Rules to Enhance Accessibility to Video Programming on TV

Closed captioning is crucial for ensuring that our televised media are fully accessible to people who are deaf and hard of hearing.  The provision of closed captioning depends upon the coordination of both video programmers and video programming distributors (VPDs) to both generate and deliver high quality caption content to viewers.  To date, however, only VPDs have been directly subject to the Commission’s closed captioning rules, leaving half of the responsible parties unaccountable for the quality of their captioning.

On February 18, 2016, the FCC adopted changes to its rules to clarify the responsibilities of video programmers and video programming distributors for the delivery of closed captions for television programming and the quality of these captions.  Programmers and distributors will each be responsible for these captioning obligations to the extent they have primary control over each issue.

The new rules also:

  • Improve the captioning complaint procedures to include video programmers in this process.  However, consumers may continue to file captioning complaints directly with their programming distributor (e.g., cable, satellite, or other providers that distribute programs directly to the home, as well as TV broadcast stations) or the FCC;
  • Require video programmers to certify compliance with captioning obligations directly with the FCC.

Follow this link to the FCC page about closed captioning on television

Click here to download the consumer guide

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