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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, November 2, 2009
Justice Department Signs Agreement with Glynn County, Georgia, to Ensure Civic Access for Persons with Disabilities

WASHINGTON - The Justice Department today announced a settlement agreement with Glynn County, Ga., to improve access to all aspects of civic life for persons with disabilities. The agreement was reached under "Project Civic Access," a Justice Department initiative to bring state and local governments into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The Glynn County agreement is the 170th reached under Project Civic Access and the ninth this year.

Project Civic Access was initiated to ensure that people with disabilities have an equal opportunity to participate in civic life. As part of the project, department investigators, attorneys and architects survey state and local government facilities and programs in various locations throughout the country to identify modifications to programs and facilities necessary to comply with ADA requirements. Depending on the circumstances in each community, the agreements address specific areas where access can be improved.

"Recognizing that civic access is a civil right, Glynn County has agreed to make improvements that will provide the full array of civic opportunities to county residents and visitors with disabilities," said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General of the Civil Rights Division. "We applaud Glynn County for entering into this agreement that will further the rights and opportunities of individuals with disabilities."

Glynn County is located in the southeast corner of Georgia. More than 11,000 of the county’s 73,000 residents are individuals with disabilities. The county seat is in Brunswick, and the county also includes St. Simons Island, Blythe Island and Jekyll Island. As a coastal city, Glynn County offers many outdoor recreational opportunities for residents and visitors, including boating, hiking, biking and bird watching.

Under the agreement, the county will:

  • Make physical modifications to its facilities so that parking, routes into buildings, entrances, public telephones, restrooms, service counters and drinking fountains are accessible to people with disabilities;
  • Continue to ensure that the 9-1-1 emergency service TTY calls are answered as quickly and effectively as other calls;
  • Ensure that the county’s official Web site is accessible to persons with disabilities, including individuals who are blind or have low vision;
  • Ensure equal access to all aspects of the county’s emergency management programs for persons with disabilities, including emergency preparation, notification, evacuation, sheltering, response and recovery; and
  • Implement a plan regarding the accessibility of sidewalks and curb ramps throughout the county.

Today’s agreement was reached under Title II of the ADA, which prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities by state and local governments. The agreement will remain in effect for five years or until the parties agree that all actions required by the agreement have been completed, whichever is later.

People interested in finding out more about the ADA, today’s agreement with Glynn County, or the department’s Project Civic Access initiative can access the ADA home page at http://www.ada.gov or call the toll-free ADA Information Line at (800) 514-0301 or (800) 514-0383 (TTY).

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