News and Notes 136 October 15

Publications from the NIDRR community and other sources in observation of National Disability Employment Awareness Month; AbleData project releases two fact sheets on trying AT products before buying and using AT for staying active with a disability; RRTC/CL recruiting human service professionals for study of innovative programs in community-based residential services for adults with disabilities; US Dept of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy releases fact sheet and toolkit on workplace flexibility; RecTech's principal investigator led panel discussion at the recent Summit and Research Forum on Improved Health and Fitness for Americans with Disabilities; Maddak's Morph Wheels foldable wheelchair wheels, developed in collaboration with RERC and and KT4TT, featured in Washington Post article; KTDRR to host the 2014 KT Conference: Effective Media Outreach Strategies.

Date sent: 
2014-10-15
NARIC news: 

Continuing with our recognition of National Disability Employment Awareness Month, we took a look at research on assistive technology (AT) in the workplace. For employees with disabilities, AT may help in performing job-related tasks, assist in moving around the workspace, or facilitate communication with co-workers and managers. Explore more on this topic with publications from the NIDRR community and other sources, available from the NARIC collection. We also recommend AbleData's extensive list of workplace AT as well as their fact sheet on How AT Can Help You in the Workplace (PDF).

Resource Highlight: 

Two New Fact Sheets from AbleData
The NIDRR-funded AbleData project (ED-OSE-13-C-0064) has released two new information products on assistive technology (AT). Try AT Products Before You Buy (PDF) outlines how users can gain hands-on experience of AT products via a demonstration at an AT center, a home trial, or short-term loans. How AT Can Help You at Play (PDF) offers tips on choosing the right AT to help staying active with a disability.

News items: 

Fitness and Disability Research in Focus at White House Summit
James H. Rimmer, PhD, principal investigator of the NIDRR-funded Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Interactive Technologies and Exercise Physiology Benefiting People with Disabilities (RecTech) (H133E120005), led a panel discussion on Psychology, Motivation, and Environment Perspective and Children with Disabilities, at the recent Summit and Research Forum on Improved Health and Fitness for Americans with Disabilities. The two-day event was co-sponsored by the President's Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

Morph Wheels Featured in the Washington Post
Morph Wheels, foldable wheelchair wheels developed by Maddak, Inc., in collaboration with the recently-completed NIDRR-funded Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Wheeled Mobility (RERC) (H133E080003) and the NIDRR-funded Center on Knowledge Translation for Technology Transfer (KT4TT) (H133A130004), were featured in 7 designs that show, yes, you can reinvent the wheel in the Washington Post. Maddak engaged the RERC for the alpha testing and development of Morph Wheels; KT4TT performed focus group testing and technical review through alpha and beta phases along with the RERC and Beneficial Designs.

Grantee event: 

2014 KT Conference: Media Outreach Strategies
The NIDRR-funded Center on Knowledge Translation for Disability and Rehabilitation Research (KTDRR) H133A120012) will host the 2014 KT Conference: Effective Media Outreach Strategies, October 27th, 29th, and 31st. This online conference will focus on using various forms of media to expand the reach and promote the use of research findings. Journalists and other experts representing traditional media, social media, and special focus media outlets will share their perspectives on effective strategies to promote the uptake of disability-oriented research findings by the media. Registration is free but required and seats are limited.

Participate: 

Human Services Professionals
The NIDRR-funded Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Community Living (RRTC/CL) (H133B130006) is recruiting human service professionals for a study of barriers to and facilitators of the effective implementation of innovative programs in community-based residential services for adults with disabilities. Participants are being drawn from professionals in the human services field who conduct research, develop human services training programs, and/or train, coach, or provide technical assistance to agencies that provide supports to persons with disabilities. Interested participants must complete a pre-qualification survey. For more information,contact study staff at orgchang@umn.edu.

Elsewhere in the Community: 

Workplace Flexibility Fact Sheet and Toolkit
The US Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) has released a new fact sheet, Workplace Flexibility: A Strategic Business Approach for an Inclusive Workplace (PDF). The fact sheet provides private-sector business examples outlining the benefits of workplace flexibility as well as the federal government's use of this approach. The fact sheet also addresses how workplace flexibility can help employers comply with many federal regulations. In addition, ODEP has provided the Workplace Flexibility Toolkit to assist employers with implementing flexible workplace policies and practices.