What Is the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990?

Posted February 5th, 2024.

Categories: Blog.

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New Jersey citizens have the protection of federal and state laws regarding the intersection of employment, workplace accommodations, and disability. Most of the protections that today exist for people with disabilities began with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. But what does this historic piece of federal legislation actually do? This blog post will explain in-depth the rights protected by the ADA, so please read it from beginning to end. And if you believe you were discriminated against at your workplace, place a call to a Camden County employment law attorney right away. We will fight to vindicate your rights.

What Is the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)?

Like the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act (42 U.S.C. § 12101) section was created to protect the rights of people with disabilities and forbid entirely discrimination against them because of their disability. The ADA took protecting these rights a step further than previous legislation, in that ADA places on employers the obligation to give their employees with disabilities reasonable accommodations. Furthermore, because the ADA is a federal statute impacting the entire United States, court rulings in states beyond New Jersey on the ADA may affect local New Jersey discrimination laws.

What Is the Origin of the ADA?

In 1986, a national advisory agency called the National Council on Disability (NCD) recommended that a bill like the ADA be passed. The NCD wrote the initial draft, to be presented to the House and Senate two years later in 1988. The Americans with Disabilities Act was popular enough to have a large and bipartisan group of legislators supporting it. On the opposing side were business interest groups, who were more concerned about the potential costs on business to be brought on by the ADA, as well as rightwing evangelical groups who refused to include protections for people with HIV.

The ADA was signed by President George H.W. Bush, to be amended by his son President George Bush in 2008 with the ADAA, or the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments.

What Does the ADA Protect?

The ADA exists to ensure that people with disabilities enjoy the same rights and opportunities under United States law as non-disabled people. Just as the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects people from discrimination because of race, color, sex, national origin, age, and religion, the ADA protects people by creating equal opportunity for people with disabilities in the realms of public accommodations, employment, transportation, state and local government services, and telecommunications.

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