The ADA has dramatically increased access and opportunities for people with disabilities in the United States. It stands as a model for disability rights legislation around the world. But times and technology have changed in the 20 years since the ADA was signed into law. The Department of Justice is seeking public input on proposed changes to the ADA that would increase access to Web information and services, captioning and video description, NextGen 911, and accessible equipment and furniture. Three sessions in Chicago, DC, and San Francisco offer the opportunity to present your views in person, by phone, or by video relay:
The Department of Justice has scheduled three public hearings on its regulatory proposals concerning the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). These proposals, or Advance Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRMs), seek public comment on the possibility of revising the ADA regulations to address accessible Web information and services, movie captioning and video description, accessibility of Next Generation 9-1-1, and accessible equipment and furniture. The ANPRMs were published in the Federal Register on July 26, 2010, and the comment period for them closes on Jan. 24, 2011.
The public hearings are scheduled for the following dates and locations:
- Nov. 18, 2010, from 9:30 A.M. to 4:00 P.M., CST, Access Living, 115 West Chicago Avenue, Chicago
- Dec. 16, 2010, from 9:30 A.M. to 4:00 P.M., EST, U.S. Access Board, 1331 F Street, N.W., Washington, D.C.
- Jan. 10, 2011, from 9:30 A.M. to 4:00 P.M., PST, San Francisco Marriott Marquis, 55 Fourth Street, San Francisco
Entities, organizations and individuals who wish to present comments at a particular hearing are encouraged to register in advance by calling the ADA Information Line at 800-514-0301 (Voice) or 800-514-0383 (TTY) at least five business days in advance of the hearing date. Organizations should designate no more than one individual to speak on behalf of the organization. Individuals who are not able to testify in person will have the option to present their comments using a speaker telephone, telephone relay service or video relay service. The department will attempt to provide an approximate time for the receipt of comments from those who register in advance; however, persons who register in advance should report to the registration desk at the hearing at least one-half hour prior to their scheduled time in order to confirm the time and order of their presentations. Those who register to comment via speaker telephone, telephone relay service or video relay service should be available at the number they provided during pre-registration at least one-half hour before their scheduled time. Some time at the hearing will be reserved for those who do not register in advance. These persons may register on-site at the registration desk, which will open one hour before the hearing is scheduled to begin and will operate throughout the day. Time to make their presentations will be assigned when open slots are available.
Comments will be limited to five minutes per person or organization, but individuals who wish to may supplement their testimony with written statements that will be made part of the official hearing record. If the department determines that there is not enough time to hear from all those wishing to present comments, the department will select among those wishing to testify to ensure representation of a range of viewpoints and interests. A laptop computer and projection screen will be available for individuals wishing to use a PowerPoint presentation in conjunction with their testimony.
The hearing sites will be accessible to individuals with disabilities. Sign language interpreters, real-time captioning and assistive listening devices will be provided. Individuals who require other accommodations, auxiliary aids or foreign language translation should contact Linda Garrett at 202-353-0423 (TTY) or by email at Linda.Garrett@usdoj.gov no later than one week before the date of the hearing they wish to attend. Additional information, including information about accessible public transportation and parking, will be available on the ADA Home Page at http://www.ada.gov <http://www.ada.gov> . The ANPRMs are available electronically in accessible formats at ada.gov/anprm2010.htm <http://ada.gov/anprm2010.htm