The inaptly named “ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017”
See extensive resources & links below to assist people fighting this draconian, misguided, damaging bill!
H.R. 620 would weaken the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a critical source of rights for people with disabilities to architectural access in public accommodations—that is, businesses such as stores, restaurants, hotels, etc.
- Removes any incentive for voluntary compliance.
- Rewards non-compliance by allowing businesses generous additional timelines, even though the ADA’s very reasonable requirements are already over 25 years old! The ADA is already carefully crafted to take the needs of business into account.
- Pretends that money damages requested from businesses are part of the ADA. Actually, this part of the ADA doesn’t even allow money damages, so changing the federal ADA will not affect any state law money damage provisions;
- Ignores the extensive, free educational resources already available today to any business on how to comply with the ADA.
- Ignores the effective & extensive methods already available to courts and state bar associations to deal with a very few frivolous lawsuits or unscrupulous attorneys. We should use those existing legal mechanisms when needed, rather than deny the civil rights established by the ADA that aid people with disabilities every day.
- Look behind the media myths: The vast majority of ADA attorneys and plaintiffs are seeking solutions to fix real denials of access. But the business community has pushed the media to portray “a few bad apples” as a landslide.
Fight H.R. 620
H.R. 620 erodes the balancing of interests in the ADA by removing incentives for businesses to comply with the law, and by placing excessive burdens on individuals with disabilities. …
… Once notice is received, the legislation would grant the business up to six months to make “substantial progress” in removing the barrier described in the notice. This means a business could spend years without actually removing barriers to come into compliance with longstanding access standards, and face no penalty, so long as “substantial progress” can be claimed. Even our largest and most ubiquitous corporations—from Wal-Mart to Starbucks—would be entitled to these exemptions.
From a letter by 110 California disability, senior, and civil rights organizations to their full Congressional delegation. The same is true for every other state, if H.R. 620 passes.
Resources against H.R. 620—feel free to use them:
- Talking Points Against H.R. 620
- DREDF National Action Alert against H.R. 620, including specific grassroots action steps to take with your member of Congress!
- This nationwide letter was written by more than 200 disability, civil, human rights, and faith based organizations to Congress opposing H.R. 620. The letter was organized by the Consortium of Citizens with Disabilities based in Washington D.C., and is posted on the National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) website.
- California Action Alert by DREDF on H.R. 620, providing a sample constituent letter against the bill, and urging contacts with misguided Congressional co-sponsors to remove their names and oppose the bill.
- Spread the word about these excellent media stories!:
- Civil Rights Enforcement with a Twenty-Seven Year Grace Period, in The Progressive, by Mike Ervin, April 19, 2017.
- The Americans With Disabilities Act Is Under Attack in Congress, from Rewire, by Robyn Powell, May 30, 2017.
- 110 California Organizations Call on Representatives to Oppose H.R. 620, the ADA Education and Reform Act.