PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – It was 30 years ago today that the United States Congress and President George H. W. Bush signed into law, the Americans with Disabilities Act, also known as the ADA.
The law made it so those with disabilities could not be discriminated against on the basis of said disability.
“The Americans with Disabilities Act presents us all with a historic opportunity,” President Bush said when he signed the bill in 1990. “It signals the end to the unjustified segregation and exclusion of persons with disabilities from the mainstream of American life. As the Declaration of Independence has been a beacon for people all over the world seeking freedom, it is my hope that the Americans with Disabilities Act will likewise come to be a model for the choices and opportunities of future generations around the world.”
This Sunday, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto reflected on what is a historic day for equality in the U.S.
“This is a historic day to reflect on how much we have accomplished in making our communities inclusive for all and to remind us how very far we still have to go,” Mayor Peduto said. “Across every city department, the City of Pittsburgh has been committed to the principles guaranteed by the ADA, and is working to reinforce that commitment every day.”
The ADA remained largely unchanged for 18 years until President George W. Bush signed the ADA Amendments Act of 2008, which broadened the ADA’s scope to “major life activities” including, but not limited to, “caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, and working” as well as the operation of several specified major bodily functions.
As of 2019, the Supreme Court of the United States declined to rule on a circuit court split on whether or not the ADA applied to websites.