National Disability Independence Day
July 26, 2022 marks the 32nd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Learn more about this law and how you can celebrate National Disability Independence Day.
National Disability Independence Day marks the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which helped change the lives of people living with disabilities. Since July 26, 1990, this civil rights law has protected those with disabilities from discrimination in their communities, jobs, transportation, schools, and any location open to the general public.
The ADA was designed to empower people with disabilities to fight for their rights, and received an enormous amount of support from both the government and local surrounding communities. According to Forbes, in one of the final pushes to pass the ADA, over 100 disabled activists crawled up the steps of the U.S. Capitol to demonstrate both their determination and the nature of inaccessibility itself. The law passed with “a degree of bipartisan support that would be unthinkable in today’s political climate.”
The law took into account the trials people with disabilities face every day, causing a ripple effect of change in American society. Buildings and facilities are required to be wheelchair accessible, restaurants offer menus in braille and crosswalks provide audio crossing instructions as well as visual signage. Telephone and Internet companies are also required to provide a nationwide system of telecommunications relay services that give individuals with hearing and speech disabilities the option to communicate over the telephone.
When celebrating National Disability Independence Day this year, ask yourself how accessible your business, facility, or community is to those with disabilities. Awareness is key!
For more information on the ADA and National Disability Independence Day, please visit the ADA National Network.