Special Commission Meeting and ADA Torch Relay Participation also Announced
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today released a preliminary status report highlighting its enforcement of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), as part of its commemoration of the 10th Anniversary of the landmark civil rights law.
"The ADA, which represents over 20 percent of EEOC's caseload, has been and will continue to be a major enforcement priority for the Commission," said EEOC Chairwoman Ida L. Castro. "While steady progress has been made since the ADA's enactment, significant obstacles remain for people with disabilities to access work and stay on the job. Individuals with disabilities must be granted equal opportunities to participate in all facets of society from the workplace to any other place their talents and abilities lead them."
EEOC has enforcement authority for the employment provisions of the ADA (Title I), which prohibit private employers, state and local governments, employment agencies and labor unions from discriminating against qualified individuals with disabilities in job application procedures, hiring, discharge, advancement, compensation, job training, and other terms and conditions of employment.
Since July 1992, when Title I became effective, through the first half of Fiscal Year 2000 (March 31, 2000), the Commission has obtained over $300 million on behalf of more than 20,000 individuals through its enforcement efforts, including settlements, conciliations, mediation, and litigation. In addition, EEOC has obtained non-monetary benefits for over 10,000 individuals, including reasonable accommodation, policy changes, training and education, job referrals, union membership, and the posting of EEO notices at job sites.
"As the preliminary status report makes clear, EEOC's combined efforts of administrative enforcement, litigation, policy development, technical assistance, outreach, education, and interagency coordination have sent an unequivocal message that disability discrimination will not be tolerated in the workplace," added Ms. Castro.
The Commission plans to issue a more comprehensive analysis of its ADA enforcement at a special public meeting on July 27 at EEOC Headquarters. The Commission Meeting will focus on past progress and future challenges of ADA enforcement.
In addition, the Commission is taking part in the national "Spirit of the ADA" Torch Relay. The 24-city, coast-to-coast, torch relay is being sponsored by the American Association of People with Disabilities. Chairwoman Castro will participate in the relay during a visit to Detroit on July 31. Commissioner Paul Steven Miller is carrying the torch today as the relay passes through Jackson, Mississippi.
In addition to enforcing Title I of the ADA, EEOC enforces Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, and national origin; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which prohibits discrimination against individuals 40 years of age or older; sections of the Civil Rights Act of 1991; the Equal Pay Act; and the Rehabilitation Act's prohibitions against disability discrimination in the federal government.
Further information about the Commission, including the full text of the report and other ADA material, is available on the agency's web site at www.eeoc.gov.
This page was last modified on July 13, 2000.
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