Obama Statement on the Seventeenth Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act
Senator Barack Obama today released the following statement on the Seventeenth Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act:
"On July 26, 1990 the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a law that aimed to ensure that Americans with disabilities have equal access to the American Dream, was signed into law. As a former civil rights lawyer, I know firsthand the importance of strong legal protections against discrimination and an abiding commitment to equal opportunity. As we celebrate the ADA's anniversary today, we must also re-commit ourselves to strengthening the law and enforcing it more vigorously and effectively.
"The ADA declared that people with disabilities are welcome throughout American society. The ADA assumed, rather than doubted, that people with disabilities can be productive workers contributing to our economy and the support of their families. Perhaps most important, the ADA was a formal acknowledgment that people with disabilities are American citizens with the same rights as other Americans: a right to belong, a right to participate fully in the American experience, and a right to have dignity and respect in the workplace and beyond.
"This right is not just something to celebrate today, it's something we must work to uphold in the months to come. We must overcome the Supreme Court decisions that have weakened this right by making the ADA Restoration Act the law of the land as a law that will bring us closer to the ADA's ideal of barring discrimination against anyone on the basis of disability."