Support Us
"> News Room | Northwest Access Fund

Use a screen reader or magnifier?

Microsoft Surface next to notebook and eyeglasses

Research Study on Accessibility at Microsoft

Microsoft is seeking people who have experience using either screen reading or magnifying products. They are seeking people in the Seattle or King County area who can travel easily to the Redmond campus.

Study Details:

  • Research sessions are available starting March 2nd. Sessions will be available throughout the month of March
  • Participants will receive $100 gratuity for participating in this research study
  • Transportation assistance can be arranged to and from their facility in Redmond
  • Research sessions are about 2 hours long
  • Participants must be at least 18 years old
  • The research projects are fun, and a great way to make a direct impact on the development and improvement of accessibility features
  • Call 425-242-8030 to sign up or get more information!

Access Fund Film: Independence & Hope

Thanks to Heartstone Studio for their work on this video.

Meet Dee: Dee uses her assistive technology to give back

(En Español)

Deanna Quillen, or “Dee” has been enrolled in our Assistive Technology (AT) Individual Development Account (IDA) Program since December 2012. The IDA Program is a matched savings account program where people with disabilities will receive a one to one match for every dollar they save. Once the savings goal has been reached, the funds can be used to purchase assistive technology.

For the past two years Dee, who is legally blind, has been saving for assistive technology that can support her with her volunteer duties as a Foster Grandparent, and with her daily technology needs. Through the IDA program, Dee has purchased quite a bit of technology, including a cane, an iPad and in November 2014, a new iPhone 6 Plus. Read More

ABLE Act Passes in the House

Image of Able Act Bill: H.R. 647

This is exciting news. The House passed the ABLE Act 404-17. If passed by the Senate as expected, the ABLE Act will allow people with disabilities to have more than $2,000 in a savings account called an “ABLE Account”. Current regulations require that a person with a disability have no more than $2,000 in savings to be eligible for Medicare and Social Security. Not only will an individual be able to have a savings account with a balance over $2,000 and still be eligible for Medicaid and Social Security, there will also be no tax on earnings from the account.

The ABLE Act will allow people with disabilities to build up a financial cushion without jeopardizing their eligibility for other services. This will open up more Asset Building opportunities to people with disabilities and considering that people with disabilities are more than twice as likely to live in poverty as a person without disabilities, this will be a huge step forward.

Click here to read more about the Bill passing in the house or click here to read the bill summary.

Today is International Day of People with Disability

Today is International Day of People with Disability and this year the United Nations is focusing on the lack of access to assistive technologies for people with disabilities. They explain that the lack of access is due in part to the fact that “around the world, persons with disabilities not only face physical barriers but also social, economic and attitudinal barriers.” So good to see attention brought to this issue!

Click here to read more about the history of International Day of People with Disability and this year’s theme: Sustainable Development: The Promise of Technology.