Tip Sheets

As ADA turns 33, more work remains to protect disability access

Media Contact

Adam Allington

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law on July 26, 1990.  While, the ADA has raised awareness and established a comprehensive national mandate for eliminating discrimination and improving access to our public and private spaces, concerns extend beyond the built environment.

Jennifer Perry

Access Specialist, Yang-Tan Institute

Jennifer Perry is an access specialist at the Yang-Tan institute where she focuses on how the human built environment can best include people with disabilities and how to follow the law when building or remodeling.

Perry says:

“The world of physical accessibility has come so far since the ADA was signed into law in 1990. Although the initial focus was to have design standards that allowed people with disabilities the ability to ‘get in the front door,’ we now have requirements that expand access to so much more, including access to recreational opportunities like swimming, golf and playgrounds.

“While there is always room for improvement, it’s thrilling to see the impact that the ADA has had on our built environment over the past 33 years.”

Wendy Strobel Gower

Director, Yang-Tan Institute on Employment and Disability

Wendy Strobel Gower is Director of Cornell University’s Yang-Tan Institute on Employment and Disability.

Strobel Gower says:

“We have come a long way in ensuring non-discrimination at work since the ADA passed. Many employers are moving well beyond the compliance standard to truly embrace inclusion at work. Others are still working to understand the benefits of a workplace that is inclusive of people with disabilities.”

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