The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities. It also ensures individuals with disabilities can enjoy the same rights and opportunities as everyone else.
The Annual Disability Statistics Compendium found that 12.8% of Americans are living with disabilities. This does not take into account senior citizens with decreasing mobility or those that are temporarily disabled due to events including accidents, illnesses, or medical procedures.
The ADA focuses on five different titles, or sections, to provide those with disability the right the equal opportunity. Title III (Public Accommodations) addresses “nondiscrimination on the basis of disability by public accommodations and in commercial facilities.” This includes privately owned facilities that are open to the public.
In 2010, the Department of Justice revised regulations within the original ADA of 1990. The regulations called for the 2010 ADA Accessibility Standards for Accessible Design, which set minimum requirements for newly constructed or renovated facilities to be accessible for individuals with disabilities.
There are a handful of requirements that must be made in all existing buildings and new construction deemed a public accommodation or commercial facility. A few requirements to be ADA compliant include:
- Common use circulation paths in employee work areas in commercial work areas.
- Accessible routes from site arrival points and within sites.
- Alterations to primary function areas in existing buildings.