Join Iowa PBS for an advance online premiere of Accessibility Now and panel discussion

Accessibility Now is part of the national Move to Include initiative

July marks the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life. Join Iowa PBS on Facebook Sunday, July 19 at 7 p.m. for a virtual screening of its newest documentary, Accessibility Now, before it premieres July 20 on statewide Iowa PBS. After the screening, Joseph Jones, executive director of The Harkin Institute for Public Policy and Citizen Engagement will moderate a panel discussion with individuals featured in the film. This virtual event is free and open to the public.

About Accessibility Now: Explore the past, present and future of the Americans with Disabilities Act as seen from the perspectives of Iowans with disabilities. They describe how the ADA has helped improve their lives, but also discuss how they continue to face barriers to equality and how the ADA might be improved. The ADA was passed by Congress in 1990 as the nation's first comprehensive civil rights law addressing the needs of people with disabilities. It prohibits discrimination in employment, public services, public accommodations and telecommunications. 

Discover how the ADA has affected Laurie McBride’s personal and professional life as a deaf-blind specialist with the Helen Keller National Center. Meet Kensie Channon who serves as a deaf rehabilitation counselor and is an active community advocate for youth and adults in Des Moines, Iowa. And, hear the story of Emmanuel Smith, a member of the first generation to grow up with the protections of the ADA. His work focuses on barriers to employment, discrimination in the workplace and advocating for effective employment services for people with disabilities.

Accessibility Now premieres on statewide Iowa PBS on Monday, July 20 at 8 p.m.

Accessibility Now is part of Move to Include, a national initiative that uses the power of public media to inform and transform attitudes and behavior about inclusion. Iowa PBS will provide special programming throughout July that spotlights people with differing abilities and disability issues including education, healthcare, housing, recreation, employment and advocating for positive change. The statewide network will work to organize community partnerships, acquire and create content, and provide outreach, engagement and promotion for the initiative. Iowa PBS will also contribute content to the PBS LearningMedia collection used by teachers, families and students free of charge.

Iowa PBS joins PBS affiliates WFYI (Indianapolis), OPB (Oregon), WGCU (Southwest Florida) and WCNY (Syracuse) in this national endeavor, led by WXXI Public Media (Rochester, NY). Move to Include was launched in 2014 as a local partnership between WXXI and the Golisano Foundation, the nation’s largest private foundation devoted to supporting programs for people with intellectual disabilities. The Foundation has provided more than $1 million in funding to date for Move to Include in Rochester. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) awarded the initiative a $645,000 grant to help expand the multimedia initiative to these five public media organizations over 16 months. The stations are creating programming to meet their community needs while expanding awareness regionally and nationally. 

To learn more about this initiative and the work of all six stations, visit movetoinclude.us. To learn more about Iowa PBS’s Move to Include programs and events, visit iowapbs.org/movetoinclude.