Department of Neighborhoods

Press Release

Mayor Annise Parker Kicks Off Disability Awareness Month 2013 Festivities
October events celebrate the contributions of Americans with disabilities



October 4, 2013 -- Houston Mayor Annise Parker kicked off the City of Houston’s 5th Annual Disability Awareness Month today at the Metropolitan Multi-Service Center, 1475 W. Gray. Observed across the nation during October, Disability Awareness Month raises public awareness of the positive contributions of Americans with disabilities. The theme this year is “Because We Are EQUAL to the Task.”


“Today we join communities across the nation in celebrating the contributions of those who have made a difference for people with disabilities,” said Mayor Parker. “We laud their accomplishments, which aptly affirm this year’s theme, ‘because we are equal to the task.’”


This year’s commemoration is of special significance to Houston because it marks the twentieth anniversary of the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities (MOPD) and the Houston Commission on Disabilities (HCOD). Both entities were established by city ordinance three years after the passage of the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.


“The City of Houston remains committed to the principles of the Americans with Disabilities Act,” said the mayor. “We recognize that we must be vigilant year-round to ensure that the rights of people with disabilities remain strong and that they are strongly enforced.”


The formal program featured a keynote address by Tony Jones, member of the Gulf Coast Workforce board and the presentation of recognition awards to individuals who have played a significant role in removing barriers for people with disabilities. Recognition awards for exemplary public service went to Cornelius Booker, Earnest Dyer and Peggy Garrett. A resource fair for people with disabilities and entertainment preceded the program. Among invited guests were City officials, community partners and members of the disability community.


The event was sponsored by MOPD, a division of the Department of Neighborhoods, HCOD and Houston Parks and Recreation Department (HPARD) in collaboration with community partners.


A series of commemorative programs and activities reflecting a wide range of interests are scheduled to take place throughout the month, sponsored by the MOPD, HCOD, HPARD and numerous community agencies.


For a schedule of events and to learn more about MOPD and its programs, visit