On July 28, the U.S. Department of Justice published “Beyond the Cases: 26 years of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)” in honor of the law’s 26th anniversary. Downloadable as a PDF, the eight-page publication gives detailed examples of enforcement efforts that have changed people’s lives.
Those most relevant to public works include:
Design: Thanks to Project Civic Access (PCA), at least 200 cities, counties, and other local governments have reached settlements.
Recreation: Also thanks to PCA, disabled children will be able to enjoy two Robeson County, N.C., playgrounds.
Transportation: Greyhound Lines Inc. will compensate passengers who’ve been unable to travel to the company’s 3,800 North American destinations.
Technology: This is an important area that’s too often forgotten. Nueces County, Texas, must use the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 to make all content accessible. The settlement also addresses physical access in the county.
Employment: Riverside, Calif., was ordered to pay an epileptic who wasn’t hired as a youth probation officer $50,000.
Education: The Nobel Learning Communities must accept children with disabilities, including those with autism, in 180 preschools, elementary schools, and secondary schools in 16 states.
Criminal justice: Thanks to a landmark settlement with Hinds County, Miss., detention centers, jails, and prisons must protect disabled detainees and inmates from excessive force and violence.
Voting rights: Launched in 2015, the ADA Voting Initiative ensures equal access to polling places. Since then, 1,300 locations have been surveyed.
Health care: Under the Barrier-Free Health Care Initiative, nursing facilities, dentists, doctors, hospitals, pharmacies, and mental health facilities must ensure that people with disabilities, especially the deaf or those with hearing loss, can access medical information.
Real-life stories with photographs are included to emphasize the law’s importance. I strongly suggest you download this excellent reference document for training purposes.