Disability Commissions in Massachusetts
Many people with MS serve on or chair their local disability commission. It is a forum to have your concerns heard even if you are not a member. The majority of cities and towns have a commission. If yours does not, speak up!
Commissions on Disability are established by vote of Town Meeting (in towns) or City Council (in cities) to promote the inclusion and integration of persons with disabilities in the activities, services and employment opportunities in the community. The Massachusetts Office on Disability provides support and guidance for these commissions.
- Advise and assist municipal officials in ensuring compliance with federal and state disability laws;
- Review policies and activities of municipal departments and boards as they affect persons with disabilities;
- Provide information, referral, advocacy and technical assistance to individuals, businesses and organizations in all matters pertaining to disability;
- Coordinate the activities of other local groups organized to meet the needs of persons with disabilities.
Commissions consist of no less than five, no more than nine members chosen by the Board of Selectman or Town Manager (in a town) and the Mayor or City Manager (in a city). The majority must be persons with disabilities and one may be a member of the immediate family of a person with a disability. One must be an elected or appointed municipal official.
If there are any questions about local Commissions on Disability, or to see if your community has a local Commission on Disability, contact the Massachusetts Office on Disability at (800) 322-2020.