Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) Definition and Legal Meaning
On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.
What is Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)?
“Federal law which outlaws discrimination against individuals with disabilities (physical or mental) in employment, public services, and places of public accommodation.
History and Meaning of Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law in 1990 by President George H.W. Bush. The ADA prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in various aspects of daily life, including employment, public services, and places of public accommodation. It protects people with both mental and physical disabilities by ensuring that they have the same opportunities as those without disabilities.
The ADA is designed to provide reasonable accommodations to individuals with disabilities, thus making it possible for them to fully participate in activities and services that others enjoy without any form of prejudice. Reasonable accommodation includes physical and technological adjustments which enable equal access and opportunities for individuals with disabilities. The ADA has been amended several times, with the most recent amendment being in 2008, to ensure that it remains up to date with the advancements in understanding and addressing the needs of people with disabilities.
Examples of Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)
- A wheelchair user requesting a ramp or elevator to access a building is entitled to reasonable accommodations under the ADA.
- An employee with a hearing disability is entitled to equal job opportunities, including training and promotion, according to the ADA.
- A movie theater providing captioning or audio description of a movie for customers who are deaf or blind, respectively, is following the requirements of the ADA.
Legal Terms Similar to Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)
- Rehabilitation Act of 1973 - This law prohibits discrimination for anyone receiving federal benefits through programs like Medicaid or Medicare on the basis of disability.
- Fair Housing Act - This law prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in housing.
- Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) - This law ensures that students with disabilities receive reasonable accommodations in schools and appropriate educational services.