June 2011 Minutes

American Public Health Association
Disability Section Minutes
Monthly Meeting Conference Call

June 2, 2011

Council members present:  Vince Campbell (Policy Chair), Stephen French Gilson (Chair), Catherine Leigh Graham (Accessibility Co-Chair), Willi Horner-Johnson (Treasurer), Barbara Kornblau (Policy chair), Suzanne McDermott (Governing Council Representative), Dot Nary (Membership Chair), Jennifer Rowland (Awards Chair), Meg Ann Traci (Secretary), Vijay Vasudevan (Student Liaison) and Kiyoshi Yamaki (Program Chair).
Council members not present: Anthony Cahill (Accessibility Co-Chair), Roberta S. Carlin (Communications Chair), H. Stephen Kaye (Chair Elect), Gloria Krahn (Governing Council Representative), and James H. Rimmer (Past Chair/Elections Chair).
Opening: Stephen Gilson opened the conference call meeting at
12:08 (EST) prompting roll call.

April Minutes were approved as corrected. Review and approval of the May minutes was postponed to the next meeting.

Barbara Kornblau reported forward progress on the process for operationalizing disability data collection requirements in Section 4302 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) (e.g., “disability status for applicants, recipients, or participants” by “any federally conducted or supported health care or public health program, activity or survey;” additional information related to specific, known barriers to healthcare experienced by persons with disabilities). Barbara suggested that the Disability Section will have several opportunities to provide input. Barbara mentioned that there are multiple agencies working on the issues (e.g., see pages 10-18 of a memorandum with recommendations proceeding from the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, dated April 28,2011: http://www.tribalhealthcare.org/documentlibrary/2011/05/Data%20Collection%20Memo%20no%20sigs%20letterhead.docx).

Currently, information relevant to this process is being provided to Henry Claypool, HHS Director of the Office on Disability and to Henry Koh, HHS Assistant Secretary for Health. Vince added that NCBDDD’s Deputy Center Director, Alison Johnson, is providing information to Koh’s office and has a good working relationship with Assistant Secretary’s Koh’s deputy assistant.

Barbara mentioned that there also is policy work proceeding toward a disability disparity supplemental rule to be integrated with current policy on racial and ethnic disparities. 

Also, Barbara mentioned HHS’ two recently published plans:

1) Action Plan to Reduce Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities. http://minorityhealth.hhs.gov/npa/files/Plans/HHS/HHS_Plan_complete.pdf

To eliminate health disparities experienced by populations with disability, the plan specifically includes ACA mandated actions on measuring disability status among other categories:  “Ensure that data collection standards for race, ethnicity, gender, primary language, and disability status are implemented throughout HHS-supported programs, activities, and surveys” (p. 14; also see Action IV.A.1, p. 31). Additionally, the plan refers to ACA’s nondiscrimination section (1557) (p. 41).  Otherwise, the plan refers to actions outlined in other national initiatives such as HP2020 (p. 9) and The National HIV/AIDS Strategy:

“Individuals, families and communities that have systematically experienced social and economic disadvantage face greater obstacles to optimal health. Characteristics such as race or ethnicity, religion, SES, gender, age, mental health, disability, sexual orientation or gender identity, geographic location, or other characteristics historically linked to exclusion or discrimination are known to influence health status. While this HHS Disparities Action Plan focuses primarily on health disparities associated with race and ethnicity, many of the strategies can also apply across a wide array of population dimensions. For example, expanding healthcare access, data collection, and the use of evidence-based interventions will contribute to health equity for vulnerable populations that are defined by income, geography, disability, sexual orientation or other important characteristics” (p. 4).

2) The National Stakeholder Strategy for Achieving Health Equity, a product of The National Partnership for Action to End Health Disparities (NPA) http://minorityhealth.hhs.gov/npa/templates/content.aspx?lvl=1&lvlid=33&ID=286   

There is more about involving the disability community outlined in this companion plan in the section titled “Increasing Access for Persons with Disabilities” (pp. 12-13).

Accessibility, Catherine Graham and Tony Cahill

On May 10, 2011, Catherine, Jim Rimmer, and Stephen met with Georges Benjamin, Anna Keller, Fran Atkinson, Natalie Sorkin, Donna Wright and other APHA staff in Washington D.C. to discuss improving accessibility of APHA to discuss the meeting and appropriate roles for the Disability Section that has expertise in this area but needs to be focused on advancing public health science in the area of disability and health. (The agenda from this meeting is attached as an addendum). With the goal of embedding something within the APHA organizational structure, Jim mentioned that he was interested in APHA’s Green Team, which Georges Benjamin mentioned as a new organizational initiative. Jim reflected that if APHA can have a Green Team, why not establish an Accessibility Team.  Stephen reported that Georges Benjamin encouraged our Section to get involved in APHA committees and that we submit Disability Section members’ names to him. For example, Dot and Stephen participated in the Equal Health Opportunity Committee in the past, but did not know if the Committee currently had a representative from the Disability Section. Councilors mentioned the Annual Meeting Program Committee (four at-large members and an affiliate member from annual meetings’ host state) as an important Committee on which to have representation (for a description of this committee and a list of other committees in the webpage sidebar, visit http://www.apha.org/about/gov/programplanning/ ).

Georges suggested indentifying opportunities in The Nation’s Health. Stephen will begin doing this and develop a list of Disability Section members interested in APHA committee work. If he identifies positions, he will put someone’s name forward. Meg asked whether APHA could take a more active role in recruiting representation from the Disability Section on key committees. Dot mentioned that APHA has conducted diversity assessments of their leadership roles, and we might ask for the latest results and APHA’s follow up actions.

Stephen commented that since some of the opportunities will become available after the APHA Annual Meetings this Fall, he offered to meet with again with APHA staff to revisit the discussion and possible action items. Stephen suggested getting names together who want to be more included.

Program, Kiyoshi Yamaki
[Supplemental report emailed by Kiyoshi summarizing program development work for the 2011 APHA Annual Meetings in Washington, D.C. (emailed June 2, 2011 at 3:39 P.M.).]

1.      Number of Sessions: 22

·         16 Sessions for Oral Presentation including:

o        13 sessions for a regular oral presentation

o        2 sessions for group (a.k.a., invited) presentation

o        1 session for co-sponsoring with PHEHP Section

·         6 Sessions for Poster Presentation

o        3 sessions each on Sunday and Tuesday

2.      Number of Abstracts Considered: 143

·         67 Accepted for Oral Presentation including:

o        53 submitted to DIS Section as a single abstract

o        11 submitted to Group Presentation

o        3 submitted to PHEHP session

·         60 Accepted for Poster

·         4 Placed in Waiting List

·         12 Rejected

3.      New This year

·         Student Orientation/Networking meeting will be moved to Sunday evening.


Catherine mentioned that she had emailed Anna to learn whether the annual meetings’ housing notification would go out early to Disability Section members. Anna said the housing notification would be distributed first to Disability Section members at 8AM and to the full membership at 10AM. However, Catherine noted that the hotel survey profiling hotels’ accessibility did not go out until later. The general housing announcement email and website housing information did not include information about the hotel survey. Kiyoshi reported as program chair that he has not received information about hotel accommodations from his APHA contact. Stephen suggested emailing Disability Section members the call for housing and the housing survey. Catherine will email Anna about including the hotel survey in future APHA communications to all members about housing at Annual Meetings (e.g., website, emails) and will copy Disability Section Executive Councilors and other APHA staff who attended the May 10th meeting (see above).  

Note. With this meeting’s agenda, Kiyoshi forwarded the following updates to the 5/5/2011 Disability Executive Council discussions of possible accessibility issues needing to be addressed in the additional presentation rooms provided by APHA for three possible invited presentation sessions at the 2011 Annual APHA meetings in Washington, D.C.

Donna Wright emailed Kiyoshi providing information on APHA’s policy and procedures Assistive Listening Devices at the 2011 Annual Meetings at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.




Based on this information, there are no additional costs for providing ALDs to individuals who could attend the invited sessions; however, APHA will not supply headphones and neck loops to be available in the additional rooms for invited sessions. Participants can make advance requests through the conference registration form, the APHA Accessibility website, and the Accessibility Booth at the Convention Center. 

There are charges associated with the additional meeting rooms, which APHA will not pay, to modify the standard presentation format of additional rooms. Two of the three rooms would need these modifications to increase accessibility for presenters and make the sessions more inclusive. If these rooms were used for invited presentation sessions, the cost would be $1,407/room (set up three table microphones in front instead of a standard podium/microphone set ($405), one wireless microphone ($375), microphone mixer ($180), labor ($390) and tax ($57.60).

Elections Chair, Stephen Gilson for Jim Rimmer

Stephen reported that election ballots went out last week and advised anyone who had not received an elections ballot through their email to notify Roberta. Robert will redistribute information about elections to all Disability Section members.  Stephen submitted Kristine Mulhorn’s name on behalf of the Disability Section as our representative on the Action Board since Kristine was interested in continuing in her role on the Action Board into a new term that will begin this fall.


Awards, Jennifer Rowland

Jennifer reported that the Awards Committee is finalizing winners, notifying nominators and winners, and collecting information (photos and bios) from the winners to be included in the 2011 APHA Annual Meetings Program. The deadline for submissions to the annual meetings program is about one week away.


Councilors discussed when to include information about the winners in our Disability Section communications. While early release of winners names would be a new tradition for the Section, the Awards Committee’s efforts to select winners in time to publish their information in the annual meetings programs affords opportunities to promote our awards prior to the meeting.  It was agreed that after the winners are announced in The Nation’s Health, that we should promote the information as well.

Policy, Vince Campbell and Barbara Kornblau

Vince provided other policy updates (Barbara had to leave the call early for another meeting). Vince underscored the need to promote the successful inclusion of disability in the priorities of the Community Transformation Grants. CTG announcements were widely distributed as a mechanism that could fund disability and health initiatives, among other initiatives, within the Disability Community and within CDC and other agencies.  With general support from Councilors, Stephen and Vince will work together on key points to promote these successes in a letter from the Chair (Stephen) to Georges. 

Membership, Dot Nary

[Membership Chair report emailed by Dot Nary for inclusion in the minutes (emailed 6/1/2011 at 3:03 P.M.).]

For the last month, Dot has focused efforts on:

1.      Overseeing redesign and printing of the Disability Section brochure. We now have 7000+ copies of the brochure on hand.

2.      Planning a July mailing to send several copies of the brochure to all current Disability Section members, along with a letter asking them to use the brochures to recruit colleagues as members.

3.      Planning to send a brochure and letter to recently lapsed (within the last few years) Disability Section members to encourage them to rejoin.

4.      Working with Willi to decide on a giveaway for the Disability Section booth in the exhibit hall at the 2011 APHA Annual Meeting.

From the latest information available from APHA, our current membership count for the section is 289 (252 primary members, and 37 non-primary).

Beyond the mailings mentioned above, Dot will be working on creation of a large print brochure and an electronic one for people with visual disabilities, and an electronic one for students, as recommended by Vijay. Also, Dot would like to find out which council members would like to have a supply of brochures mailed to them, and also ideas others may have about disseminating them to new populations to boost membership. Dot will mention this during the monthly teleconference meeting.


Student Liaison, Vijay Vasudevan

Vijay reported that the Student Committee had completed a needs assessment to identify what was important about membership to students. Also, there is a call in two weeks to plan the Student Networking Session.


Treasurer, Willi Horner-Johnson

Willi reported that the Disability Section’s final CDC funds for 2010-2011 were spent on new brochures and that we need to use our operating funds by June 30th on a mailing. Also, in communication with Summit Marketing and considering feedback about a new promotion item, we are purchasing yoyos instead of flexible fliers for the 2011 APHA Annual Meetings and other distribution. Willi does not anticipate having any news about our future CDC funding until later this summer.


Strategic Planning, Stephen Gilson

Stephen mentioned that results of the student needs assessment will go into the Disability Section’s Strategic planning process. Stephen and Steve are coordinating a times when they can meet to continue the strategic planning process.



The APHA Semi-Annual meetings will be held later this month in Chicago with a focus on health care reform. APHA funding will support Vijay’s and Dot’s attendance as a student representative and a Disability Section representative, respectively.


Stephen Gilson closed the meeting at
1:03 PM (EST).  The next Disability Section Council meeting will be held July 7, 2011 at 12:00 p.m. (EST).




APHA, public health and people with disabilities

May 10, 2011



1.      Clarification of meeting goals for all in attendance

2.      Discussion: Role of APHA in public health involving people with disabilities

a.      People with disabilities as public health students and professionals

                                                              i.      People with disabilities who choose public health as a career

                                                             ii.      Public health professionals/students who acquire/develop a disability

b.      Public health practice with people with disabilities

c.      Public health research with people with disabilities

3.      Items to be discussed from Disability Section

a.      Clarification from all in attendance about the expectations, roles, and functions of the Disability Section

b.      Executive Council of Disability Section views of role and function of the Section

                                                              i.      Focus on the advancement of Public Health principles, scholarship and research that reciprocally are influential with disability;

                                                             ii.      Policies and practices that assure and cover costs by APHA ( not Dis section) of equality of access to all resources for section members and all other members

1.      Website

2.      Conference

3.      Materials

4.      Film festival etc.

                                                           iii.      Clarification that access is broader than disability section members and concerns

c.      Call for plan and timeline developed by APHA to assure and monitor access that does not fall to Disability Section.

4.      Items to be discussed from APHA

a.      Future of Dis Section

                                                              i.      Plans for programming

                                                             ii.      As a newer Section, where do you want your Section to go? Goals?

b.      Greater involvement with APHA boards and committees

                                                              i.      Spot on programming committee

                                                             ii.      How can members of the Section participate to the fullest extent? Right now have members only on Action Board and Membership.

                                                           iii.      DIS representative on EHOC

c.      APHA – capacity and resources