Discrimination

Discrimination

The Americans with Disabilities Act, passed in 1990, gives 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. Barriers to employment, transportation, public accommodations, public services, and telecommunications have imposed staggering economic and social costs on American society.  The ADA guarantees equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities in public accommodations, employment, transportation, State and local government services, and telecommunications.

Cry Wolf Quotes

The House of Representatives has “chosen to put the unreasonable damage awards and attorney’s fees above the needs of employers and employees.”

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Nancy R. Fulco, a lawyer for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, The New York Times.

This is going to be a lawyer’s paradise.

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Senator Jesse Helms (R-NC), New York Times.

The ADA also mandates job accommodation financed by employers. Employers will be forced to restructure existing facilities, restructure jobs, hire readers, signers, and assistants in order to accommodate over 900 physical and mental impairments. This converts a civil rights measure into a mandated benefits program for the disabled. It is time we ask ourselves what `reasonable accommodation' means for American businesses. The real cost to the nation would be higher costs of production, fewer jobs, lower real wage rates, lower levels of output and income, and a weaker competitive position for the U.S. business in the world market place.

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Ron Marlenee (R-MT) speaking to the House of Representatives. The Americans With Disabilities Act.

Small firms who have hired persons with disabilities have found in most cases that the extra effort makes good economic sense. I have no doubt that, faced with the demands of the marketplace, many other small firms will soon learn the same lesson.

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Sally Douglas, Assistant Director of Governmental Relations for Research Policy for the National Federation of Independent Business. The Congressional Digest. December, 1989.

Evidence

Resources

Campus Progress is the youth wing of the Center for American Progress. They do work in both advocacy and journalism.

Institute for Women’s Policy Research is a prominent think tank that is largely focused on American women's issues. This covers everything from pay equity to welfare reform to domestic violence.

The National Council on Disability is a small, Senate-appointed, federal agency that advises the president and Congress on matters concerning the disabled community.

The American Association of People with Disabilities organizes and advocates for the disability community across the nation.