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The Americans with Disabilities Act and Vocational Rehabilitation

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Civil Rights Act of 1964 model for all subsequent civil rights legislation, ... Schools, colleges, universities, day care centers, hospitals, nursing homes, ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The Americans with Disabilities Act and Vocational Rehabilitation


1
The Americans with Disabilities Act and
Vocational Rehabilitation
  • When Clients Complain . . .
  • OVRS Annual In-Service
  • Salem Convention Center
  • August 13, 2008
  • Presented by Sherri Rita

2
In the Beginning . . .
  • Early to mid-1900s Social programs were about
    bridging gap between rich and poor, addressing
    skilled labor shortages created by war and
    rapidly expanding industrialization, and
    increasing the number of potential wage-earning
    consumers
  • Focus on education as gateway to
    work/self-sufficiency
  • training programs for displaced workers and
    veterans with disabilities
  • compulsory education (with vocational focus and
    segregation of students w/disabilitiesearly
    special education)

3
In the Beginning . . . (cont)
  • Eventual recognition that causes for poverty and
    barriers to gainful employment were manifold, and
    not everyone was working and self-sufficient . .
    .
  • Systemic barriers that were established based on
    assumptions regarding gender, skin color,
    disability needed to be dismantled
  • Brown vs. Bd. Of Education
  • Civil Rights Act of 1964

4
People with Disabilities on the Civil Rights
Continuum . . .
  • Recognition that social barriers needed to be
    addressed/removed through legislation to allow
    for enforcement of rights (Brown vs. Bd. Of
    Education)
  • Civil Rights Act of 1964 model for all subsequent
    civil rights legislation, including 504 and the
    ADA

5
Rehabilitation Act of 1973
  • Section 504 addressed systemic barriers to
    employment and recognized for the first time the
    civil rights of individuals with disabilities (in
    federally-funded programs)
  • No otherwise qualified person with a disability
    can be excluded, based on disability, from
    participation in any federal program or activity
    receiving FFA.
  • Schools, colleges, universities, day care
    centers, hospitals, nursing homes, public welfare
    officesyou name it, it probably receives federal
    funding

6
Section 504 (continued)
  • Covered persons initially only included those
    whose disability limited employability and who
    could reduce limitation through VR services
    subsequently expanded to cover any qualified
    person with a disability including someone who
    would qualify for program/service with reasonable
    accommodation
  • Shift in what was considered equal access to
    opportunity Affirmative removal of barriers
    (not just equal treatment)

7
Why the ADA, then?
  • Section 504 only covered federally-funded
    entities/programs
  • Widespread discrimination continued to manifest
    in private sector business, employment
  • Understanding that inferior social status not a
    necessary consequence of disability (or color, or
    nationality . . .) but rather of societal
    barriers/prejudices
  • Recognition that perception of disability
    resulted in discriminatory practices/policies, as
    well

8
The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
  • Guaranteed equal access to state and local govt,
    private businesses and employers
  • Protects
  • Persons with a physical or mental impairment that
    substantially limits one or more major life
    activities or
  • Persons with a record of such an impairment or
  • Persons regarded as having such an impairment
  • Purpose to remove barriers created based on
    myths, fears, stereotypes

9
Features of the Americans with Disabilities Act
of 1990
  • Title I Employment
  • Title II State/Local Government
  • Title III Public Accommodations

10
Nondiscrimination in VR Programs
  • OVRS is subject to both 504 and the ADA
  • OVRS is obligated under each of these laws to
    provide reasonable accommodations to our clients
    whose disabilities may prevent them from
    effectively accessing our services and to not
    deny services or otherwise discriminate on the
    basis of real or perceived disability

11
Eligibility for VR vs. Protected Status under
ADA/504
  • current illegal drug users do not enjoy protected
    status when exclusion based on that drug use
    however
  • current illegal drug users cannot be denied
    health or VR services based on drug use if
    otherwise qualified

12
Internal Grievance Procedure
  • OVRS is obligated under each law to make
    available an internal grievance procedure to
    allow clients to submit complaints regarding the
    denial of accommodations or other actions that
    may be construed as disability discrimination
  • Clients are not obligated to file an internal
    grievance before taking other routes to enforce
    their rights (CAP, federal Office of Civil
    Rights, or private lawsuit)
  • It is in OVRS and clients interests to resolve
    complaints at the lowest level and as efficiently
    as possible

13
Purpose of Todays Session
  • The breakout session later today will allow you
    to ask your specific questions regarding what may
    constitute disability discrimination in the
    administration of our VR program
  • This session is to assist you in understanding
    our internal grievance procedure
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