City, community partners celebrate the 30th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act

July 22, 2020
Facebook Live Town Hall, #THanksToTheADA social media campaign, and other virtual events

Louisville Metro Government along with community partners are excited to honor and celebrate the 30th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), one of the United States’ most noted pieces of civil rights legislation prohibiting discrimination and guaranteeing that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else.  President George H.W. Bush signed the ADA on July 26, 1990.

The ADA gives 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. It guarantees equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities in public accommodations, employment, transportation, state and local government services, and telecommunications.

To commemorate the anniversary, this partnership group is highlighting a series of virtual events including sponsoring a Facebook Live Town Hall hosted by Mayor Greg Fischer, a #ThanksToTheADA social media campaign, and a virtual rally, conference, documentary and other events.

About 57 million people in our country have a disability and over 33% of Kentucky’s adult population have some type of disability. It is estimated that 25% of our nation’s current 20-year-olds will experience a disability in their lifetime.

“The Americans with Disabilities Act was a monumental win for the civil rights for people with disabilities across the nation,” said Mayor Fischer. “We are excited to celebrate, commemorate and continue working on expanding opportunities for people with disabilities in Louisville and across the country.”

Calendar of Events:

Wednesday, July 22

  • 2 p.m. - A live streaming of the Netflix documentary "Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution".  Hosted by the Center for Accessible Living.  Register here.
  • 3:45 p.m. - Virtual Ribbon Cutting Ceremony of the Zoom Group's Day Training Program Expansion.
    Join GLI and their ambassadors, and Zoom Group Board of Directors and staff, as they celebrate on Facebook Live. The Zoom Group's newly renovated and expanded adult day training programs includes pre-employment services, supported employment and job coaching, just to name a few.  More info at https://www.facebook.com/zoomgroupky/.

Thursday, July 23

  • 11 a.m. - A live screening of "If I Can’t Do, It Ain’t Worth Doing" followed by an interview with Arthur Campbell, Jr. Hosted by Center for Accessible Living.  Register here.
  • 2 – 3:30 p.m. “Digital Accessibility: What have we learned and what does the future hold?” virtual conference.
    The authors of the ADA did not specifically reference information technology in the language of the law or regulations. Yet we know through guidance and interpretation through the various federal enforcement agencies and courts that the accessibility of the "virtual world" and devices and mechanisms utilized to access it are indeed covered by the law.   Sponsored by Great Lakes ADA Center, Southeast ADA Center, Pacific ADA Center, ADA National Network.  Register here

Friday, July 24 –

  • 1 – 1:45 p.m. - Virtual Town Hall, “Celebrating 30 years of the ADA”, hosted by Mayor Greg Fischer on Facebook Live at https://www.facebook.com/MayorGregFischer/. Panelists include:
    • Councilman Brandon Coan, Louisville Metro Councilman for District 8 and sponsor of the Commission for Persons with Disabilities
    • David Allgood, director of Advocacy for the Center for Accessible Living
    • Jon Pilbean, supervisor of Adaptive and Inclusive Recreation program for Louisville Metro Parks and Recreation.
    • Randy Frantz, assistant executive director of TARC
    • Wanda Henderson, director of Paratransit and Customer Service at TARC

Sunday July 26

  • 1 p.m. - Americans with Disabilities Act Virtual Rally.
    Grassroots activism was crucial to the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act three decades ago. Though we can’t meet in person we can still gather online to hear from disability leaders, share personal experiences, celebrate all that has been accomplished and reflect on what still needs to be done.  Sponsored by the New England ADA Center, The Harkin Institute. Register here.

Also in honor of the 30th anniversary, Louisville Metro Office for Aging & Disabled Citizens (OADC) and partner agencies invite residents, organizations, government entities, and faith communities to join in the celebration by sharing your #ThanksTotheADA moment.  In a social media post, use any media (video, pictures, written word, or other) to share how you are celebrating the anniversary.  Then post it on social media using #ADA30 or #ThanksToTheADA.  Suggestions include:

  • Going to an accessible space? Share a photo or video.
  • See an accessible business? Take a picture and thank the owner.
  • #ThanksToTheADA there are captions or sign language interpreters at theaters, concerts, and ballgames.
  • #THanksTOTheADA a service dog can accompany a person with a disability to school, a job site, and places for shopping, dining, and recreating.
  • This will look different for everyone, so have fun and be creative!

The ADA National Network created a toolkit with #ADA30 publications, trainings, events and other ideas for celebrating the ADA.   To learn more, visit https://www.adaanniversary.org/.

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