July 26th marks the 23rd anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by President George H. Bush. The ADA and the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA) imparts civil rights protections to individuals with disabilities similar to those provided to individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, age, and religion. The ADA and the ADAAA also assure equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities for access to businesses, employment, transportation, state and local government programs and services, and telecommunications.
The ADA National Network funded through the National Institute on Disability Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) consists of ten Regional ADA National Network Centers located throughout the United States that provide local assistance to ensure that the ADA is implemented wherever possible. The Southeast ADA Center has created the ADA Anniversary Tool Kit for workplaces, schools, businesses, organizations, and communities to share their ADA efforts on the anniversary of the ADA and throughout the year. The online Tool Kit includes:
- Background and history on the ADA
- Information about the Supreme Court’s July 1999 Olmstead Decision prohibiting the unnecessary institutionalization of persons with disabilities
- Disability statistics
- Other resources on the ADA
About the ADA National Network
The ADA National Network is the “go to” resource for information, guidance and training on the ADA and its implementation. The Network consists of ten regional centers located throughout the United States that provide services and assistance tailored to meet the needs of local businesses, government and individuals. The ADA National Network is not an enforcement or regulatory agency—but rather a helpful resource. Contact the ADA National Network with questions on the Americans with Disabilities Act or to find a Regional ADA National Network Center near you by calling 1-800-949-4232 (voice/tty). All calls are confidential. Visit the ADA National Network website for links to extensive ADA information and training opportunities (www.adata.org).
About the Southeast ADA Center
The Southeast ADA Center is a grant project of the Burton Blatt Institute (BBI) at Syracuse University. The Center answers questions, provides training and materials about the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The Center serves an eight-state geographic region: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. As part of the ADA National Network sponsored by grants from the U.S. Department of Education’s National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR), the Southeast ADA Center is one of 10 regional centers offering training and technical assistance to promote voluntary compliance with the ADA, including information about the rights of people with disabilities and the responsibilities of businesses as well as state and helpful resource. For more information, visit the Southeast ADA Center website (ADAsoutheast.org).
For more information on the ADA including law/regulations, design standards, technical assistance materials, and enforcement please visit ADA.gov through the United States Department of Justice Civil Rights Division.