About the Law: Americans with Disabilites Act (ADA)
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), enacted on July 26, 1990, provides comprehensive rights and protections to individuals with disabilities in the areas of employment, public accommodations, state and local government services, and telecommunications. The goal of the ADA is to assure equality of opportunity, full participation, independent living and economic self-sufficiency. The ADA prohibits all state and local governments and most private businesses from discriminating on the basis of disability.
The ADA provides a clear and comprehensive national mandate for the elimination of discrimination against individuals with disabilities and provision of reasonable accommodations for qualified students enrolled in higher education. Reasonable accommodations include but are not limited to redesigning equipment, provision of written communication in alternative formats, e.g., closed captioning, relocation of classes to an accessible location, altering non-accessible existing facilities and adhering to accessibility guidelines for new facilities, and providing test accommodations.
The following links provide more information on ADA:
An overview of federal legal mandates covering individuals with disabilities in higher education and lawsuits that have interpreted the law.
A 1996 landmark class action suit Guckenberger v. Boston University in which students with learning disabilities were denied reasonable accommodations. The judge found in favor of the students.
Last revised on 11/10/2004
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