KANSAS CITY, KAN. – This week marks the 30thAnniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (the ADA), a critical civil rights law that aims to eliminate discrimination against people with disabilities, U.S. Attorney Stephen McAllister said today.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Kansas is proud to play a critical role in the Justice Department’s enforcement efforts under the ADA, which was signed into law on July 26, 1990, and is the nation’s preeminent civil rights law for providing access and equal opportunity for people with disabilities.
“Our office is authorized to investigate complaints, conduct compliance reviews to ensure accessibility, initiate and intervene in litigation, and provide technical assistance to businesses, governments, and the general public,” McAllister said. “All of these actions are designed to promote voluntary compliance with the ADA.”
“The ADA has been watershed legislation that has improved the lives of millions of Americans by including them more fully in our society, recognizing and celebrating their talents and abilities, rather than allowing employers and institutions to act based on stereotypes regarding their challenges. One champion of the ADA, Senator Bob Dole, recently celebrated his 97th birthday, and I would like to say both ‘Thank You’ and ‘Happy Birthday!’ to the Senator from my home county of Russell.”
The promise of the ADA is its wide-ranging efforts to eliminate disability discrimination across the range of services, programs, and activities that most Americans take for granted, but were largely inaccessible to individuals with disabilities prior to the law’s enactment. Whether in employment, areas of civic life, or in the day-to-day activities and access to goods and services that we all enjoy – the ADA ensures that individuals with disabilities enjoy the same opportunities as all Americans to participate in everything this nation has to offer.
Over the past 30 years, the United States has undertaken the challenge of changing perceptions about disability, tearing down barriers to equality, and altering the systems that have historically excluded people with disabilities. This week, the Justice Department commemorates the many ways that the ADA has transformed society—by replacing exclusion with access, segregation with integration, and limitations with self-determination.
For more information about the 30th Anniversary of the ADA, please visit www.ada.gov. To file a complaint with the Department, please visit the Civil Rights Division’s portal at https://civilrights.justice.gov/report/. For more information about the ADA, call the Department’s toll-free ADA Information Line at 800-514-0301 or 800-514-0383 (TTY).
The year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the Department of Justice. Learn more about the history of our agency at www.Justice.gov/Celebrating150Years.