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Achieving the Promise: Celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the ADA

July 21, 2020
Source: Administration for Community Living (ACL)

Visit and join us at noon Eastern Time on Thursday, July 30, for a virtual celebration

On July 26, 1990, President George H.W. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) into law. This landmark civil rights law prohibits discrimination by local and state governments, provides standards for public accommodations and commercial facilities, protects against discrimination in the workplace, and ensures equal access to healthcare, social services, public transportation, and telecommunications.

To celebrate the 30th anniversary, the Administration for Community Living (ACL) and the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) – both at U.S. Health & Human Services (HHS) – partnered to create a website that tells the story of how the ADA came to be, showcases some of the progress we have made as a country toward achieving the ADA’s promise of true inclusion, and illustrates some of the work being done within HHS and across government, to continue to remove the barriers to inclusion people with disabilities often face. Most important, through short video interviews, you can hear from people with disabilities about how the expectations for access and inclusion created by the ADA have affected their lives.

Visit today and check back often – we’re just getting started!

Please Join Us

At noon Eastern Time on Thursday, July 30, ACL and OCR will host a virtual celebration of the anniversary. ACL Administrator Lance Robertson and OCR Director Roger Severino will be joined by Lynn Johnson, Administrator of the Administration for Children and Families; Rear Admiral Micheal Weahkee, Director of the Indian Health Service; and Calder Lynch, Director of the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services, for a discussion of the progress we have made as a department – and a nation – in the years since the ADA established a clear expectation of accessibility and full participation, as well as the work that still remains to remove barriers to inclusion and equal access to all facets of American life.

The event will be livestreamed, and in effort to improve the viewing experience for the deaf and hard of hearing audience, there will be a second livestream that includes American Sign Language translation in a format that is more similar to in-person events.

Spread the Word

Since the ADA became law, Americans with and without disabilities increasingly live, learn, work, play, and contribute side by side. Since communities are strongest when everyone can contribute, and everyone benefits when everyone is included – from early childhood throughout our lives – the ADA is something we all should celebrate. We’ve pulled together a few tools to help.

More ADA Celebrations

On July 30 from 2-4 p.m. Eastern Time the Department of Transportation is hosting "Breaking Down Barriers: Celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act". This event will bring together leaders across the government to acknowledge accomplishments in transportation that have resulted from this landmark civil rights legislation. In addition to celebrating the ADA’s success, speakers will also discuss what actions need to be taken to ensure an accessible transportation future for all Americans. Lance Robertson will participate on a panel that will begin at approximately 2:40 p.m. Eastern Time.

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