On July 26th, 2020, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) celebrates its 30th Anniversary. On this date 30 years ago there were over 1,000 wheelchair users and other people with disabilities on the White House lawn as President George H. W. Bush signed the milestone legislation into law.
The ADA is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and private places that are open to the general public. The purpose of the law is to make sure that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else.
The ADA created a collective consciousness about discrimination on the basis of disability. The nondisabled public, the media and elected officials could not identify unnecessary segregation and special treatment for people with disabilities as discrimination so the law provided behavioral guidance.
Throughout its history, United Spinal has used the ADA to advocate for greater access to public transportation, the built environment, public facilities, and employment. We have used ADA to fight for inclusion of wheelchair users to the maximum extent feasible because unjustified isolation of individuals with disabilities is properly regarded as discrimination based on disability.
However, it is our obligation to the disability community and to our society to complete the yet unfinished work that the ADA has begun. To reach that end, we must collectively better understand the ADA.
Here are a number of resources that can help you understand the Americans with Disabilities Act:
ADA Resource List