Laws and Legislation Concerning Individuals with Disabilities

Events

Rehabilitation Program

1920

Many soldiers returned home from WWI with disabilites due to injury. Congress passed the first rehabilitation program for soldiers.

Social Security Act

1935

President Franklin D Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act which established a program in which adults with disabilities were given assistance.

First Accessibility Standard

1961

The American National Standards Institute published the first accessibility standard to make buildings accessible to and usable by people with a physical disability. 49 states adapted this legislation by 1973.

Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Ac

1963

The Mental Retardation Facilities and Community Mental Health Centers Construction Act passed and set money aside to develop disability councils, protection and advocacy system and university centers.

The Architectural Barriers Act of 1968

1968

This act requires the the design of buildings and facilities on the job to remove anything that could be perceived as an obstacle to employment for people with disabilities. Requires buildings to be constructed or altered to be made accessible.

Rehabilitation Act of 1973

1973

This act makes it illegal for any public institution receiving federal funds to discriminate against people with disabilities.

The Education for Handicapped Children Act of 1975

1975

Now called Individuals with disabilities Education Act (IDEA) guarantees free, appropriate public education for all children with disabilities.

National Council on Disability

1978

This council was established in 1978 within the Department of Education and serves to promote policies, programs, practices, and procedures that guarantee equal opportunity for all people with disabilities.

Americans with Disabilities for Accessible Public Transportation

1983

ADAPT began its campaign for accessible lifts on buses and access to public transit for people with disabilities.

Technology-Related Assistance for Individuals with Disabilities Act of 1988

1988

This legislation increases access and availability of assistive technology.

The Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988

1988

Requires that all new multi-family housing have a certain number of accessible housing units (both public and private homes.)

Americans with Disabilities Act

1990

The act becomes a law in 1990 and was the most important civil rights law. It provides support and advocates for people with disabilities.

Reauthorization of IDEA

1997

This reauthorization started the standards based IEP process.

No Child Left Behind Act

2002

This along with the reauthorization of idea in 2004 provided that students with disabilities be exposed to general education curriculum.

History of Disability Rights

2006

The first bill that requires public schools to be taught they history of the disability rights movement.