Webinar: Nondiscrimination in Illinois Crisis Standards of Care and Hospital Visitor Policies During Covid-19 and Beyond


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Webinar: Nondiscrimination in Illinois Crisis Standards of Care and Hospital Visitor Policies During Covid-19 and Beyond

August 3, 2020 @ 5:00 PM 6:00 PM CDT

Join Access Living at 5 p.m. Monday, August 3, for a webinar to discuss how state guidance prohibiting discrimination in emergency treatment and hospital visitation policies can save lives. With the uptick of COVID-19 cases throughout the country, it’s important to understand Illinois state guidance that protects people with disabilities and others at risk of bias in lifesaving treatment.

Learn more about the State guidance in place for non-discrimination in COVID-19 treatment and hospital visitation policies.

In April, Access Living took the initiative to organize more than 140 Illinois organizations to ask the State to issue guidance to medical providers saying emergency lifesaving protocols could not discriminate against people with disabilities. At the same time, disability advocates were taking similar action in several states and with the federal government. Illinois state officials responded.

The recent death of Michael Hickson, a Black disabled father who had Covid-19 and was denied medical care at a Texas hospital, has reignited an important national conversation about the value of disabled lives and the intersection of disability and race.

This webinar will feature people with disabilities, Illinois officials, and advocates talking about why and how having healthcare policies and procedures in place is essential to saving disabled lives.

ASL interpretation and CART provided.

There will also be time for a Q&A at the end of the webinar. Due to the limitations of the Zoom webinar platform, questions submitted during the event via chat are not accessible to participants using screen readers. If you are interested in submitting a question to the panel, we encourage all attendees to do so in advance via the form at the end of this page.


Karen Tamley is the President and CEO of Access Living. Previously she served as the Commissioner of the Chicago Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities for 14 years. Karen was appointed by President Obama in 2016 to serve on the United States Access Board, which develops national accessibility guidelines and standards.

James L. (Jim) Bennett is Illinois Department of Human Rights Director. As Director, he is responsible for overseeing the agency’s primary goals to prohibit discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, disability and more. Previously, Bennett served as the Midwest Regional Director at Lambda Legal, the nation’s largest legal organization dedicated to securing the full civil rights of the LGBTQ community and people with HIV.

Anita Cameron is the Director of Minority Outreach at Not Dead Yet, a national disability rights group that opposes legalization of assisted suicide and euthanasia as deadly forms of discrimination against disabled people. Since 1986, Anita has volunteered with ADAPT, a national, grassroots disability rights organization. In 34 years of involvement, she has risen to a position of national leadership.

Mary Rosenberg is a staff attorney at Access Living where she represents people with disabilities in discrimination cases, conducts education and outreach about disability rights laws, and is involved in public policy advocacy. She completed her undergrad degree at Loyola University in Chicago and received a master’s degree in special education from Pace University. She graduated from John Marshall Law School in the top 3 percent of her class.

Emcee: Dr. Angel Miles is the Healthcare and Home and Community-based Services (HCBS) Policy Analyst at Access Living.

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