According to a report in The Oklahoman, Senate Bill 871 (SB 871), a proposed law change, could hurt the disabled community in Oklahoma. SB 871 calls for the Office of Disability Concerns to be consolidated with the Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth. The director of the Office of Disability Concerns told The Oklahoman that consolidating his office would severely limit their ability to help members of the disabled community in Oklahoma.
The Office of Disability Concerns does not have a large staff. Counting the director, the staff totals five people. Disability Concerns assists around 2,500 disabled people a year with issues, such as finding disability resources, businesses or employers failing to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act, disability-related problems at work and finding employment.
If SB 871 is passed and Disability Concerns is merged with the Commission on Children and Youth, the director of Disability of Concerns believes his office would lose its standing as an authority within the community. He told The Oklahoman that when his office talks about compliance issues with businesses, having their own government seal carries a lot of weight.
Without having their own seal, Disability Concerns could lose the clout necessary to ensure businesses and employers comply with disability regulations. Instead, they may have to resort to tying up the court system with issues that they had previously been able to simply resolve through discussion and education. This could lead to disability issues that were once resolved quickly being drawn out over much longer periods, with the disabled community in Oklahoma being the ones who ultimately pay the price.
Our Tulsa Disability Law Firm Fights for the Disabled Community in Oklahoma
As Tulsa disability attorneys Erin Stackenwalt, Charles Holladay and Darren Rackley talk about in the following video, our Oklahoma disability benefits law firm is dedicated to protecting the rights of the disabled in Oklahoma and their families.