About the Office of Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (OEIA)
The Office of Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility works to maintain an environment that is free of discrimination and harassment on the basis of disability by ensuring that city government, businesses and residents comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act and all other federal and state disability statutes.
OEIA advances its mission by working closely and synergistically with all city departments. It meets regularly with department heads, and conduct surveys of city-owned or city-managed facilities and city-sponsored programs to ensure that all buildings, programs, and services are accessible to all. OEIA's director participates in inter-departmental initiatives and serves on committees to ensure that the access/non-discrimination concerns and diversity interests of employees and the at-large community of residents with disabilities are well-represented and are factored into all major decisions.
OEIA ensures that the rights of city residents and employees, including the right to a reasonable accommodation of a disability, are protected by maintaining compliance with all federal, state and local statutes, by instituting guidelines and policies, and by providing education and training.
OEIA also works with the Somerville Commission for Persons with Disabilities (SCPD) to promote and celebrate an inclusive and accessible community. OEIA holds regular events aimed at increasing awareness of the values of an inclusive and accessible city, and increasing civic and community engagement and participation. These events promote equal opportunity and inclusion of persons with disabilities into all aspects of Somerville community life and spotlight the OEIA’s focus on celebrating abilities, even as it forcefully advocates for the rights to self-determination, respect, and dignity for individuals with disabilities.
OEIA serves as a resource for city employees, residents, and businesses. It engages with city departments, and school administrators and teachers to bring ADA awareness and provide training to staff and students.
OEIA conducts extensive outreach to allow residents to review and discuss the city’s plans for addressing the accessibility deficiencies, to make suggestions and to set forth their priorities
All in all, OEIA works to empower and lift up the city's best and most valuable assets – its residents and employees. All persons, including individuals with disabilities of varying degree, must feel they can participate fully and equally, whether or not they choose to, and they must be afforded the dignity to decide for themselves. OEIA safeguards the right to equal access, self-determination, respect and dignity of all persons with disabilities in Somerville. That, in turn, ensures that persons with disabilities, like all others, can successfully live, work, play and raise a family.
Legal & Compliance
Legal & Compliance
Americans with Disabilities Act Public Notice
The City of Somerville does not discriminate on the basis of disability in admission to, access to, or operation of its programs, services or activities. The City of Somerville does not discriminate on the basis of disability in its hiring or employment practices.
This notice is provided as required by Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
Questions, complaints or requests for additional information may be sent to:
Betsy Allen, ADA Coordinator
Office of Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility
167 Holland Street
Second Floor, Room 207
Somerville, MA 02144
(617) 625-6600 X2323 (Voice)
(866) 808-4851 (TTY)
Persons with disabilities who need auxiliary aids and services for effective communication, written materials in alternative formats, or reasonable modifications in policies and procedures, in order to access the programs and activities of the City of Somerville, are invited to make their needs known to the ADA Coordinator.
This notice is available in alternative formats, including audiotape, computer disk and Braille, from the ADA Coordinator.