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Chicago, Illinois


Contact Information

If you, your business, or organization are interested in becoming a part of the Disability Initiative Workgroup, please contact Rolando Palacios of Center for Economic Progress at [email protected].

If you are already a member of the Disability Initiative Workgroup and have questions regarding the IRS participation, then please contact Jesse Carpenter at [email protected].

If you are already a member of the Disability Initiative Workgroup and have questions regarding the IRS participation, then please contact Jesse Carpenter at [email protected].


Disability Initiative Workgroup - 2010 Plans

This tax season the Center will continue to operate its free tax preparation program at 33 community-based locations across Illinois (including 13 in Chicago, seven in Illinois’s northern cities, and 13 across downstate Illinois). All sites are ADA accessible, with one exception in Chicago Lawn, where the tax site is located on the second floor of St. Nicholas of Tolentine Grammar School.  Center staff will accommodate clients with disabilities by bringing a mobile tax preparation station on the school’s first floor when needed.  Data from past tax seasons indicates that a significant portion of the Center’s clients with disabilities are Deaf or hard of hearing. To ensure quality service is provided to these individuals, in 2010 the Center will make arrangements to provide an interpreter for any client that requests this service. This usually involves scheduling an appointment for tax preparation with the Chicago Hearing Society, although when possible, the Center will draw from its own pool of volunteers. The Center’s volunteer services staff tracks volunteers recruited that speak other languages, including American Sign Language. This enables the Center to match signing volunteers with hearing-impaired clients who have made an appointment, at no cost. . In the months leading up to the 2010 tax season, the Center expects to use the lessons learned from previous efforts at building a working group to get one off the ground. The Center is currently working to identify a partner interested in leading this group, and plans to discuss this issue in an upcoming meeting with the IRS Local Taxpayer Assistance Center and the Illinois Department of Revenue. The Center would additionally welcome any support from the National Disability Institute in networking with local Disability Organizations.

In addition to the pre-tax season mailing, the Center will provide in-person outreach presentations at organizations in the Chicagoland area. Last year the Center’s Director of Tax Services set up a table at the Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Chicago’s First Annual Resource Fair. The Center expects to participate in this fair again in 2010, and provide in-person outreach to at least 50 individuals suffering from epilepsy. The Center’s marketing staff will additionally provide outreach presentations to audiences at disability organizations throughout Chicago on an as-needed basis, and expects to continue to work with organizations such as Easter Seals and Inspiration Corporation to raise awareness of the Center’s services among their constituencies through presentations.