Disabilities Comm. discussesAll-Abilities Day at Revere Beach

The Revere Commission on Disabilities held its regular monthly meeting on May 14 via Zoom. Chair Ralph DeCicco, vice-chair Pauline Perno, Ellie Pagan Vargas, Annmarie Fiore, and Mario Grimanis were on hand for the session.

DeCicco presented an update regarding the grant from the Save theHarbor/Save The Bay-Better Beaches Program for the All Abilities Day at Revere Beach this summer. He noted that the check for the grant will be forthcoming and that he had submitted an application for a permit to DCR for August 17 for the All Abilities Day. He said that beach-accessible wheelchairs and mats will be provided by DCR.

DeCicco presented an update on improving accessibility, and repairing the accessibility chairlift, at the Garfield School pool. He also noted that improved, ADA-compliant signage for accessibility is in the process of being installed at Revere City Hall.

DeCicco reported on the May meeting of CODA (Commissions on Disabilities Alliance) that he attended. He said that among the topics was a discussion by a CODA commission member regarding the new DOJ Web Accessibility WCAG 2.2AA guidelines for cities, towns, and other municipalities that will go into effect on June 24, 2026, for communities with 50,000 or more residents and with a date of June 24, 2027, for those under 50,000 population.

There also was a discussion about monitoring and assessing the accessibility of dog parks for persons with disabilities who are dog owners, focusing on items such as proper pathways leading to the dog park, accessible-compliant surfaces, and gate handles that meet ADA requirements.

Some CODA members mentioned that they are looking into applying for this year’s round of grants from the Mass. Office of Disabilities (MOD). This application cycle will run until June 14th. DeCicco said he is looking to apply for a grant for projects in City Hall, such as the height of counters in City Hall offices.

Julie Brown, the new president of the Revere Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SEPAC), presented a written update on the group’s May/June events: 

— SEPAC held a free virtual workshop on Wednesday, May 8, forpParents and professionals hosted by the Federation for Children with Special Needs;

— SEPAC held its last in-person meeting of the school year on Thursday, May 30; and 

— Brown noted that SEPAC is looking for any and all interested parties to join either as board members or volunteers or simply to offer overall support. Anyone interested in getting more involved in SEPAC Revere can send an email to [email protected] or call Julie Brown at 617-817- 2653.

DeCicco brought up an issue that had been brought to his attention by a Beachmont resident regarding the area in the vicinity of the overpass over Ocean Ave. where the sidewalks are impassable because of overgrowth and tree stumps. 

“It is in deplorable condition,” said DeCicco, noting that the resident cannot wheel her father in his wheelchair because of the poor condition of the sidewalk. “However, there is a question as to whether it is DOT or DCR that is responsible for maintaining the sidewalk,” DeCicco added, suggesting that State Rep. Jeff Turco may have to be contacted in order to achieve a resolution between the state agencies.

Perno concluded the meeting by reading the monthly reminder: The Commission on Disabilities office number is 781-286-8267. Residents can also call Revere 311 directly and speak to their staff Monday through Friday. They will answer most questions, but if they are unable to or if you want to speak to our department directly or schedule an appointment, please ask to be transferred to the Disability office. If we are unavailable, please leave a detailed message and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.

As always, please tell us if you want something discussed or added to our monthly meeting agenda. You can let us know if you would like to speak on any issue or concern. The Commission is here to help and assist all the disabled residents and families of Revere.

The next meeting of the commission (via Zoom) is set for Tuesday, June 11, at 6:00 PM. There will not be a meeting in July.

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