The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1989 is a comprehensive federal statute affirming the rights of persons with disabilities. It is a wide-ranging civil rights statute that prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities – similar to the protection given to women, minorities and others since the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was enacted. The law bars discrimination in employment and requires most employers to make reasonable accommodations for qualified employees with disabilities starting in 1992. It also bars discrimination in any activity or service operated or funded by state or local government similar to a 1973 requirement for services operated or funded by the federal government.
On September 25, 2008, the President signed the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (“ADA Amendments Act” or “Act” or “ADAAA”). The Act makes important changes to the definition of the term “disability” by rejecting the holdings in several Supreme Court decisions and portions of EEOC’s ADA regulations. The Act retains the ADA’s basic definition of “disability” as an impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, a record of such an impairment, or being regarded as having such an impairment. However, it changes the way that these statutory terms should be interpreted in several ways.
For more information on the ADA, please contact the Office of Human Resources at 607-431-4315 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.ada.gov.