Americans With Disabilities Act

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The Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 The Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, henceforth known as the ADA, was first sponsored and introduced to Congress in 1988 by Senator Weicker and Representative Coelho in the 100th Congress. The second version of the ADA was revised and introduced again in 1989 by Senator Tom Harkin, Senator Durrenberger, Representative Coelho, and Representative Fish in the 101st Congress ( This law began with many initial proposals that contributed to its final outcome. Some of these initial proposals were non-legislative but contributed greatly to the final product of the law. Robert L. Burgdorf Jr., a disability rights scholar, stated that “the Americans…show more content…
As African Americans had once fought for desegregation, people with disabilities mirrored African Americans when they protested injustice through the streets. Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act offered some protection as it banned discrimination on the basis of disability ( Section 504 was a historical moment because it was the first time people with disabilities were seen as a class. The Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund states that “Section 504 recognized that while there are major physical and mental variations in different disabilities, people with disabilities as a group faced similar discrimination in employment, education and access to society,” but there was still the question of how Section 504 regulations would be publicized ( The Department of Health, Education, and Welfare became responsible for broadcasting these regulations, which would serve as guidelines for all federal agencies. Section 504 regulations, which were issued on May 4, 1977, helped form the foundation for the ADA and helped further the disability rights movement…show more content…
When the ADA didn’t pass through Congress in 1988, a joint hearing was held before the Senate Subcommittee on Disability Policy and the House Subcommittee on Select Education ( People with a wide variety of disabilities as well as parents of disabled children discussed the barriers that people with disabilities constantly face and the stereotyping and prejudice that is so prevalent in their lives. According to the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund, “after the hearing, a commitment was made by Senator Kennedy, Chair of the Labor and Human Resources Committee, Senator Harkin, Chair of the Subcommittee on Disability Policy, and Representative Owens of the House Subcommittee on Select Education, that a comprehensive disability civil rights bill would be a top priority for the next Congress” ( The hearing helped set the stage for the major steps in the congressional process. According to the Library of Congress, after being revised and reintroduced to Congress, the first step in the Congressional process began when the ADA was introduced to the Senate in May of 1989. In August of 1989, it passed on to the Committee on Labor and Human Resources and then in September, it passed with an amendment in the Senate 76-8. In May of 1990, it was passed in the House
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