To their credit, The Arc of Texas had rewritten the ad by the late afternoon, put in an EEO statement, and the national CEO, Peter Berns, told me on the record that of course a blind person could be a CEO of any branch of The Arc ("seeing" had been one of the qualifications).
In the social media mini storm, though, friends alerted me to similar clauses that proliferate in tech, the broader nonprofit sector, and academia. Being an academic, I thought I'd take on the latter first. The result was a major piece for Al Jazeera America that spent a lot of days as either the first or second most viewed/shared piece on the whole site.
I wrote a followup that's just been published, with quotes from disabled academics, the EEOC, the National Council on Disability, and the few schools willing to go on record about this. I'll keep working on getting comments and accountability from these universities.
I'm pleased to say that both Lehigh Community College and the Tarrant County College District have agreed to remove the "physical requirement" language and work on EEO compliance. Others have not, yet.
In the meantime, here are reaction posts. Let me know if you see more, please.
- Parker Malloy at Upworthy wrote up the issue and interviewed me about how a medieval history professor came to be a disability rights journalist.
- A quick take from Inside Higher Ed.
- Here's a blog post on this issue specifically in Philosophy.
- Metafilter had a little piece on it.
- A nice piece and discussion from Balloon Juice.
Have you checked your HR department yet?