Today is the 30th anniversary of the “Americans with Disabilities Act.”
It was signed into law on the White House lawn by President George H.W. Bush on July 24, 1990.
Prior to this act, people could be fired from their jobs because of a disability, kids could be kept out of school, and service could be refused in a restaurant or store. Although our country included these forms of discrimination against people with disabilities, there were many more than mentioned.
The act has provided access and opportunity to people all across America. Things like wheelchair ramps, accessible bathrooms and drinking fountains, close captioning, and many more accommodations are now legally required in the United States.
This act also inspired many other countries to pass similar type laws.
There are currently over 60 million Americans challenged by some form of disability. Although this act has helped them tremendously, we still have a ways to go in providing equal opportunity for all people in this country. This is especially true for people of color with disabilities.
Please remember that improvements for people with disabilities did not come easy, and took many years of consistent protest.
Also remember that for every individual that we help to be successful makes our team and country better. As is the case with the battle for all civil rights, we must continue to fight for our brothers and sisters with disabilities.
Never forget the “all” in “liberty and justice for all.”
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