Emerging Trends - Calls to Reform the ADA

Potential Post-ADAAA Amendments to the ADA:

A 10 Year Snapshot of Proposed Federal Disability Legislation

The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (“ADA”), 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq., prohibits discrimination based on a disability.  Patterned after Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, 29 U.S.C. § 701, the ADA was a bipartisan effort to expand civil rights for the millions of individuals living with a disability.  The ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (“ADAAA”), Pub. L. No. 110-325, amends the ADA’s definition of a covered disability to restore a broad scope of coverage.

 The ADA Project was established to educate the community about the ADA, as amended by the ADAAA.  This includes providing information about proposed changes to the law.  This document provides an overview of those proposed changes as found in bills that have been introduced to amend the ADA in the 10 years since the ADAAA was enacted.

Synopses of the Bills

 Generally, the substance of the captured bills fall into one of three categories:  expanding coverage of Title I of the ADA; enforcement bills that try to improve utilization of various discrimination laws, including Title I of the ADA; and public accommodation bills that examine accessibility and changes to Title III of the ADA, including bills that purport to address compliance through notification requirements and bills related to travel, tourism, transportation, and accessibility (including service animals) for individuals with disabilities.  Resolutions also were introduced to recognize milestones and anniversaries relating to the ADA and related disability rights.

This chart provides information about these bills and resolutions.