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Westport Forms New Commission On People With Disabiilties

Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe made appointments for the newly established Commission on People with Disabilities.
Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe made appointments for the newly established Commission on People with Disabilities. Photo Credit: Roy Fuchs

WESTPORT, Conn. -- Members of a newly established Commission on People with Disabilities have been appointed by First Selectman Jim Marpe.

James Ross, the former chair of the Citizen’s Transit Committee, will Chair the Commission, according to the announcement.

In addition, six other Westport residents, including persons with disabilities, advocates, caregivers, and professionals, will serve on the Commission: Marina Derman, Diane Johnson, Stacie Curran, LuAnn Giunta, Tom Holleman and Evan Levinson

Staff support for the Commission will be provided by the Town's Human Services Department.

An ordinance was passed in July to establish the Commission on People with Disabilities at a Representative Town Meeting.

Its mission is to ensure that Westport is a town where people with disabilities have the opportunity and support to enjoy full and equal access to lives of independence, productivity, inclusion and self-determination, said the release.

"With approximately 20 percent of our Town’s population directly affected by their own or a family member’s disability, the Commission will serve as a resource to raise community awareness and to serve as a forum for community discussion on issues affecting people with disabilities and their families," said Marpe.

He continued that, "It will also be a source for identifying barriers and advocating change where there are opportunities to improve access and participation in the life of our community."

The Commission's first meeting is set for Thursday, Jan. 19 at 8:30 a.m. in Town Hall, room 201. Subsequent meetings will be held the third Thursday of each month at 8:30 a.m. and are open to the public. Citizens are encouraged to attend.

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