Ableism Is Still With Us Long After Passage of the Americans With Disabilities Act

Whole Communities

This summer we celebrate the 26th anniversary of the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. This landmark legislation opened the doors of opportunity to millions of people who have since demonstrated that they are ready, willing and able to contribute in so many ways to enriching our society. We have all reaped the benefits of this legislation and discovered that our communities are stronger when everyone is given the chance to participate.

We won’t be truly honoring this anniversary, though, if we only look back at what has been accomplished without also taking into consideration what is yet to be overcome.

Unemployment and poverty rates are still unacceptably high for citizens with disabilities. And there continue to be disturbing incidents of discrimination against people with disabilities both in popular culture and in daily life.

I had a conversation once with a father of a daughter in her early 20s…

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