In a Whitehouse press briefing, the Administration commented that today, on the 31st Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), we celebrate the inclusion and access promoted by the landmark civil rights law for disabled Americans.
Grounded in four core outcomes of full participation, equal opportunity, independent living, and economic self-sufficiency, the ADA prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in contexts such as of public accommodation, employment, transportation, and community living and provides recourse for people with disabilities who faced discrimination. The nation has made significant progress since the law was signed. To commemorate this day, President Biden will sign a proclamation marking the 31st anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The Biden-Harris Administration has taken significant steps to achieve a more inclusive, accessible, and equitable country for people with disabilities, including people with disabilities that experience multiple forms of discrimination and bias on the basis of race, gender, sexual orientation and other factors.
Specifically, the Administration has:
•Centered Equity as a Priority on Day One. President Biden’s Inauguration Day Executive Order 13985 on Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government directs the whole of federal government to pursue a comprehensive approach to advancing equity for all, including with respect to persons with disabilities. Additionally, the EO establishes an Equitable Data Working Group to assess federal data, including on disability, to advance equity.
•Increased Access to Democracy for Voters with Disabilities. Executive Order 14019 on Voting Access ensures people with disabilities can access key voting resources, requires an assessment of barriers to the right to vote independently and privately, and will help ensure that all Americans, including voters with disabilities, can exercise their right to vote.
•Raised Wages for Federal Contractors to $15. In April, President Biden signed Executive Order 14026 raising the minimum wage for workers employed by federal contractors, including with respect to workers with disabilities.
•Advanced Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility Across the Federal Government. In June, President Biden signed Executive Order 14035 advancing diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) across the Federal government. The EO charges agencies with assessing their state of DEIA to eliminate barriers employees face. For federal workers with disabilities, the EO sets a path for the Federal government to become a model employer to improve accessibility, ensure accommodations can be requested, increase opportunities for advancement and hiring, and reducing physical accessibility barriers.
•Provided Billions of Dollars to Children and Adults with Disabilities. President Biden’s American Rescue Plan is the first COVID relief bill to include explicit provisions for people with disabilities.