Americans with Disabilities Act

Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990

The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) upholds and extends the standards for compliance set forth in Section 504. It is civil rights legislation, which provides a clear mandate for the elimination of discrimination against individuals with disabilities. Specifically, it guarantees equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities in employment, public accommodations, transportation, state and local government services, and telecommunications. The ADA is divided into five parts:

  • Title I: Covers nondiscrimination in employment activities.
  • Title II: Subpart A requires that state and local government entities and programs be made accessible. Subpart B covers transportation and requires that public transportation systems be made fully accessible and usable.
  • Title III: Covers the accessibility and availability of programs, goods and services provided by private entities.
  • Title IV: Requires telecommunication services be made accessible to persons with speech and hearing impairments and has specific reference to the development of telecommunication relay systems and closed captioning technology.
  • Title V: Contains miscellaneous provisions that apply to all of the other titles as well.

Title II of ADA Regulations [28 CFR 35.130(b)(7)]

“A public entity shall make reasonable modifications in policies, practices, or procedures when the modifications are necessary to avoid discrimination on the basis of disability, unless the public entity can demonstrate that making the modifications would fundamentally alter the nature of the service, program, or activity.”

Implications for the University of Connecticut

Under Title II of the ADA, the University of Connecticut cannot discriminate against students on the basis of disability. General requirement under Title II include:

  • no exclusion on the basis of disability;
  • no discrimination through contract;
  • participation in the most integrated setting;
  • no discrimination through eligibility criteria;
  • modifications in policies, practices, and procedures to avoid discrimination on the basis of disability;
  • modifications in policies and rules to allow the presence/use of service animals;
  • no discrimination through association;
  • surcharges to cover the costs of accessibility may not be imposed solely on persons with disabilities;
  • examinations and courses related to licensing or certification for educational, professional, or trade purposes must be accessible;
  • no harassment or retaliation; and
  • absolute confidentiality