22 years old and still under attack--the ADA

July 26, 2012

The business community has long been seeking to require that they be given some notice before their failure to comply with federal accessibility law results in accountability.  The first such attempt was the “ADA Notification Act.” See H.R. 3590, 106th Cong., 2d Sess. (2000); S. 3122, 106th Cong., 2d Sess. (2000); H.R. 914, 107th Cong., 1st Sess. (2001); S. 782, 107th Cong., 1st Sess. (2001); H.R. 728, 108th Cong., 1st Sess. (2003).  Thankfully, it never got anywhere.

However, the attacks keep coming, the latest from Rep. Lungren, a Republican from California who has proposed the ironically named "ACCESS" Act.  The acronym is for "ADA Compliance for Customer Entry to Stores and Services."  You can read the text here:  http://www.opencongress.org/bill/112-h3356/text

It simply seeks to require folks with disabilities, who have encountered barriers to their access to businesses, to give such businesses notice of the 22-year-old ADA and an "opportunity" to comply with it before they utilize their private right of action to enforce the ADA.  Cleary, 22 years is not nearly enough time to figure out how to stripe a parking lot, or to ramp an entry.

The Judiciary Committee held hearings in connection with this proposed legislation on June 27, 2012, and I've not heard any updates regarding it since.  Let's hope this one dies quickly. To make sure of it, write your member of congress!

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