Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

Introduction & Background Information

The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law on July 26, 1990, and became effective January 26, 1992. This is a landmark legislation to extend civil rights protection to people with disabilities. The ADA prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in:

  • Commercial Facilities
  • Employment
  • Public Accommodations
  • Public Transportation
  • State and Local Government Services
  • Telecommunications

The ADA required the U.S. Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (Access Board) to supplement its Minimum Guidelines and Requirements for Accessible Design to serve as the basis for regulations to be issued by the Department of Justice and the Department of Transportation under Title II. On July 26, 1991, the Access Board published its ADA Accessibility Guidelines for Building and Facilities (ADAAG).

The ADA essentially prohibits the exclusion of persons with disabilities from:

  • Activities
  • Benefits
  • Jobs
  • Programs
  • Services

To that end, the ADA's five sections cover:

  • Employment
  • Public Accommodation
  • State and Local Government
  • Telecommunication
  • Transportation

Local governments must comply with Title I and 11 of the ADA. Title I deals with all aspects of employment, and Title 11 specifically covers programs and services, and activities of any state or local government. The City is in compliance with Title I and is in the process of complying with Title 11.

Overview to Recent Implementation

On July 26, 1990, President George Bush signed into law the Americans with Disabilities Act. The Act protects the right of individuals with disabilities from discrimination in employment, services, activities, transportation, public accommodation of state and local government and telecommunication. The Act gives protections from discrimination comparable to that afforded other groups on the basis of:

  • Age
  • National Origin
  • Race
  • Religion
  • Sex

The Act consists of the five following sections:

  • Title I Employment
  • Title II Public Services
    1. Subtitle A: General Prohibitions
    2. Subtitle B: Public Transportation
  • Title III Public Accommodation and Services
  • Title IV Telecommunication
  • Title V Miscellaneous Provisions

Baton Rouge Impact

The City of Baton Rouge is primarily affected by the provisions found in the first three sections. The effective date for compliance with most of the provisions of the Act was January 25, 1992.