U.S. Dept. of Education Disability Civil Rights Standards, Checklists

Community Access Project filed this request with the Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights of the United States of America.
Tracking # 13-01928-F
Status
Completed

Communications

From: Community Access Project

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

1. Please provide us with the Accessibility Standards Checklist(s) for Existing facilities (facilities constructed prior to January 26, 1992) currently utilized by the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) during investigations into compliance with the regulatory requirements of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) with respect to the physical accessibility of Public Library facilities, programs, and services.

If a formalized Accessibility Standards Checklist is not available: please alternately provide us with: any and all investigative strategy documents, data review checklists, procedural and practice documents that have been utilized by the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) since January 26, 2011 to investigate compliance with the regulatory requirements of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) with respect to the physical accessibility of Public Library facilities, programs, and services.

2. Please provide us with the most comprehensive list available of the civil rights legal issues that DOE OCR accepts for investigation when processing portions of Department of Justice Project Civic Access ADA Title II complaints that include allegations of disability discrimination within institutions for which DOE's Office of Civil Rights has been delegated authority instead of the Department of Justice (i.e., public elementary and secondary education systems and institutions, public institutions of higher education and vocational education other than schools of medicine, dentistry, nursing, and other health-related schools, and public libraries).

We also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as we believe that this request is in the public interest.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, please inform us of the total charges in advance of fulfilling this request.

This request must be filled in a manner that complies with Section 508 accessibility standards; i.e. no scanned-image electronic documents, nor paper copies for documents that are available in native electronic format. We prefer that your response be provided electronically, by e-mail attachment if possible.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. We look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Community Access Project (Massachusetts)

From: ED FOIA Manager

Good Afternoon,

In order for the U.S. Department of Education to begin processing your request we will require supply a full name. Until this information is received this request will not be processed and after 30 days your request will be considered withdrawn.

From: Community Access Project

Dear ED FOIA Manager:

The full name to use for this request is Eileen Feldman.

(It's funny that you didn't give me your full name in your response!)

Please acknowledge that you have received this information. thank you.

From: ED FOIA Manager

FOIA Tracking Number: 13-01928-F
Name of Requester: Eileen Feldman
Date of Request: July 15, 2013
Date Request Received: July 16, 2013

Your request (below) has been forwarded to the appropriate office within the Department to search for responsive documents. If you have any questions regarding the status of your request, please contact the FOIA Requester Service Center at (202) 401-8365 or by e-mail at EDFOIAManager@ed.gov (please include the case tracking number).

Thank you.

ED FOIA Service Center

[cid:image003.jpg@01CE8474.A6B84510]UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

From: Spencer, Donna

Please call me at 202-453-5978 regarding your FOIA request.

From: Darby, Linda

From: Community Access Project

Ms. Darby,

Thank you for sending the fee waiver acceptance letter. Please be aware that each MuckRock request is potentially sent by a different requester, and thus has a unique email address. Please direct all communications related to FOIA request 13-01928-F to this inbox.

Thank you for your assistance.

From: Spencer, Donna

Please call me at 202-453-9778 or you FOIA wil be close out within in 10 working day.

From: Community Access Project

Thanks Donna, I called the above number today and left a message, and I'll try again. Since the message on your end named someone else, please let me know if there is another number or an extension to contact you more directly. -EFeldman

From:

July 26, 2013
Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Education
Office for Civil Rights
Lyndon Baines Johnson Department of Education Bldg
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-1100

This is a follow up to request number 13-01928-F:

Thanks Donna, I called the above number today and left a message, and I'll try again. Since the message on your end named someone else, please let me know if there is another number or an extension to contact you more directly. -EFeldman

---

On July 26, 2013:

Please call me at 202-453-9778 or you FOIA wil be close out within in 10 working day.

---

On July 25, 2013:

Ms. Darby,

Thank you for sending the fee waiver acceptance letter. Please be aware that each MuckRock request is potentially sent by a different requester, and thus has a unique email address. Please direct all communications related to FOIA request 13-01928-F to this inbox.

Thank you for your assistance.

---

On July 24, 2013:

---

On July 23, 2013:

Please call me at 202-453-5978 regarding your FOIA request.

---

On July 19, 2013:

FOIA Tracking Number: 13-01928-F
Name of Requester: Eileen Feldman
Date of Request: July 15, 2013
Date Request Received: July 16, 2013

Your request (below) has been forwarded to the appropriate office within the Department to search for responsive documents. If you have any questions regarding the status of your request, please contact the FOIA Requester Service Center at (202) 401-8365 or by e-mail at EDFOIAManager@ed.gov (please include the case tracking number).

Thank you.

ED FOIA Service Center

[cid:image003.jpg@01CE8474.A6B84510]UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

---

On July 15, 2013:

Dear ED FOIA Manager:

The full name to use for this request is Eileen Feldman.

(It's funny that you didn't give me your full name in your response!)

Please acknowledge that you have received this information. thank you.

---

On July 9, 2013:

Good Afternoon,

In order for the U.S. Department of Education to begin processing your request we will require supply a full name. Until this information is received this request will not be processed and after 30 days your request will be considered withdrawn.

---

On July 8, 2013:

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

1. Please provide us with the Accessibility Standards Checklist(s) for Existing facilities (facilities constructed prior to January 26, 1992) currently utilized by the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) during investigations into compliance with the regulatory requirements of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) with respect to the physical accessibility of Public Library facilities, programs, and services.

If a formalized Accessibility Standards Checklist is not available: please alternately provide us with: any and all investigative strategy documents, data review checklists, procedural and practice documents that have been utilized by the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) since January 26, 2011 to investigate compliance with the regulatory requirements of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) with respect to the physical accessibility of Public Library facilities, programs, and services.

2. Please provide us with the most comprehensive list available of the civil rights legal issues that DOE OCR accepts for investigation when processing portions of Department of Justice Project Civic Access ADA Title II complaints that include allegations of disability discrimination within institutions for which DOE's Office of Civil Rights has been delegated authority instead of the Department of Justice (i.e., public elementary and secondary education systems and institutions, public institutions of higher education and vocational education other than schools of medicine, dentistry, nursing, and other health-related schools, and public libraries).

We also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as we believe that this request is in the public interest.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, please inform us of the total charges in advance of fulfilling this request.

This request must be filled in a manner that complies with Section 508 accessibility standards; i.e. no scanned-image electronic documents, nor paper copies for documents that are available in native electronic format. We prefer that your response be provided electronically, by e-mail attachment if possible.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. We look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.

From: Spencer, Donna

I provided you the wrong number. The correct number is 202-453-5978.

From: Community Access Project

2:50 pm July 26, 2013
re: FOIA request 13-01928-F

Dear Donna Spencer and Wanda Praise (? I apologize for not being sure what I heard as Wanda's last name, but thank you for joining my call today with Ms. Spencer)

Thank you for speaking with me just now regarding my FOIA request. It sounds like you are telling me that the DOE does not utilize any checklist regarding accessibility of physical facilities; therefore, you will provide me with whatever manuals that DOE investigators rely upon when investigating Section 504 and ADA complaints regarding physical accessibility of facilities built prior to January 26, 1992.

Since you informed me that DOE does not have jurisdiction over accessibility of Public Libraries, but only "schools and universities" I have asked you to please show my FOIA request to a disability specialist in DOE's Office of Civil Rights prior to completing your response to this request, to make sure that both #1 and #2 of this FOIA request is responded to without ambiguity.

Thanks again,
Eileen Feldman for Community Access Project

From: Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights

A copy of documents responsive to the request.

From: Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights

A copy of documents responsive to the request.

From: Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights

A copy of documents responsive to the request.

From: Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights

A cover letter granting the request and outlining any exempted materials, if any.

From: Community Access Project

8/20/13
Dear Donna Spencer,

Thank you very much for the responsive documents to this FOIA regarding accessibility checklists used by DOE to examine accessibility issues in general as well as for public libraries, which continue to be under DOE's jurisdiction. In particular, you have provided us with general checklist guides meant to be used in taking field measurements regarding compliance with ADA Title II prior to the enforcement of the 2010 Regulations; and also two investigative reports, with measurements redacted, showing checklists that guided the investigation of two libraries by DOE OCR's Region X team.

We were wondering why most of these documents were not provided in accessible electronic format. The scanned image .pdfs that were provided cannot be read by persons relying on text-to-speech technology.

If you can please tell us who to follow up with in order to gain access to these materials in accessible electronic format, we would greatly appreciate that.

It is our understanding that DOE has considered accessibility to information a priority for all employees and external customers, including individuals with disabilities since 2001, as was stated at http://www2.ed.gov/fund/contract/apply/clibrary/software.html and reinforced, in spirit, via the "Dear Colleague" letter of 2010 (http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/letters/colleague-20100629.html), which affirms that text-to-speech technology advances the Civil Rights of persons with visual and other disabilities.

Best wishes
and Thank You again for your sincere efforts in responding to this FOIA request,

Eileen Feldman and the Community Access Project, Somerville

From: Spencer, Donna

Dear Ms. Feldman:

Sorry for not being able to accommodate your request. However, the documents provided are in an image (PDF) format and we do not have at this time the capability to convert the document in an accessible format. Hopefully in the very near future we will have this capability to serve our customers' requests.

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