Celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act

July 26, 2015 marks the 25th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Celebrations of the signing of the ADA by President George H.W. Bush in 1990 are taking place across the nation.

The public is invited to two local events celebrating the ADA 25th Anniversary. The first takes place on Saturday, July 25, 2015 from 10:00 am to Noon at the Lawrence Public Library auditorium, 707 Vermont Street, Lawrence, Kansas.

Craig Weinaug, Douglas County Manager is the emcee for this event, which includes remarks from Stuart Boley, City Commissioner; Ron Miller, the faith community; and State Representatives Barbara Ballard and Boog Highberger. Key note speakers are Dot Nary, Assistant Research Professor, Research and Training Center on Independent Living, University of Kansas; Ray Petty, Kansas Coordinator with Great Plains ADA Center; and Ray Pence, University of Kansas Department of American Studies. A panel of eight individuals with disabilities will also share stories about the positive impact of this law, and identify changes needed for people with disabilities to fully realize the intent of the ADA “to assure equality of opportunity, full participation, independent living, and economic self-sufficiency for individuals with disabilities.” The event program is available at: http://www.independenceinc.org/?p=1886

This event is sponsored by Independence, Inc., City of Lawrence Human Relations Division, Self Advocate Coalition of Kansas, Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center, Dole Institute of Politics, Cottonwood, Inc., Lawrence Memorial Hospital, Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, and US Bank.

Another ADA Anniversary event we encourage you to attend is the Dole Institute of Politics Exhibit Opening, “Celebrating Opportunity for People with Disabilities: 70 years of Dole Leadership.” An open house & reception will take place from 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m., Sunday, July 26th in the Simons Media Room, Dole Institute of Politics, 2350 Petefish Drive, Lawrence, Kansas. A brief speaking program will occur at 3:00 p.m.

This celebratory exhibit kicks-off the Dole Institute’s special series, “commemorateADA,” recognizing the 25th anniversary of the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Senator Dole’s important role in this legislation and other disability rights efforts.

Refreshments will be provided at both events. The public is invited.

The ADA and the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA) give civil rights protections to individuals with disabilities similar to those provided to individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, age, and religion. The ADA and ADAAA assures equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities for access to businesses, employment, transportation, state and local government programs and services, and telecommunications.

Comments

Nancy Hamilton 2 years ago

Visiting Europe last summer made me appreciate the ADA. Although I thoroughly enjoyed visiting historical landmarks such as the Notre Dame and Versailles, I could not help but notice that these beautiful landmarks would be in accessible to anyone in a wheel chair. More importantly, so would many restaurants and department stores, because their entrances often had a small step up from street level. Finally, trying to navigate the Paris Metro or the London Tube with luggage makes you realize how helpful it is to have an elevator when you need one. When you make a building accessible to those with disabilities, you make it more accessible to everyone.

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