The Disability Issues Office
About the Office
The central mission of the Office on Disability Issues in Psychology is to work toward the elimination of bias against and the promotion of equal opportunity for persons with disabilities in education and training, research, and professional practice. The office serves as an information and referral resource on:
Development and dissemination of reports and other written materials on professional and consumer issues;
Monitors the welfare of these groups as consumers of psychological services; and
Promotes the development and application of psychological knowledge to address public policy issues affecting them.
The Office on Disability Issues in Psychology seeks to raise awareness of disability issues within the Association as well as promote and expand equal opportunities of persons with disabilities in all areas of psychology. The Office serves as an important information and referral source for in-house staff, APA members and the general public, and develops materials on professional and consumer issues. The Office also promotes the development and application of psychological research to influence public policy decisions affecting people with disabilities.
Specifically, the office:
Gathers research and other substantive information relevant to disability issues;
Monitors litigation and judicial decision-making, legislation, and executive initiatives;
Develops information and information products;
Provides consultation and training to in-house staff and general APA membership on issues relating to disability;
Serves as a contact and referral source for APA members and the general public and disseminates materials on a variety of educational, professional, and consumer issues;
Provides technical assistance, information and referral, and consultation to external professional organizations, APA members and students, other APA offices, and the public;
Networks and engages in collaborative efforts with APA offices and divisions, federal agencies, and other disability groups within professional organizations.
During the APA Council of Representatives February 2011 meeting, the Guidelines for Assessment of and Intervention with Persons with Disabilities was adopted. The goals of these guidelines are to provide practitioners with (1) a frame of reference for the assessment and treatment of persons with disabilities and (2) basic information and further references in the areas of assessment, intervention, identity, relationships, and the education and training of psychologists. The guidelines can be found online.
APA with Gallaudet and Howard University’s Women’s Health Institute hosted a 2 day conference entitled, “Inequity to Equity: Promoting Health and Wellness of Women with Disabilities” It was held at Gallaudet’s Kellogg Conference hotel in Washington, D.C, in October. The conference was designed to be an interactive, interdisciplinary conference centered on women with disabilities and health. For more details about the conference go to the webpage.
The Committee on Disability Issues in Psychology and Disability Issues office put developed the second edition of the Resource Guide for Psychology Graduate Students with Disabilities. The first and second editions are both online. To download a copy visit the webpage. For a complimentary hard copy of either edition please contact Mara Lunaria by email.
APA Disability Issues Staff
Anju Khubchandani, MA
Director of Disability Issues,Public Interest
Carly Ostrom, Disability Issues Intern