STATEMENT BY KENNETH L. MARCUS, ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR CIVIL RIGHTS, ON THE 28TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE SIGNING OF THE AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT
July 26, 2018
Twenty-eight years ago today, President George H. W. Bush signed into law the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The ADA is the most consequential civil rights legislation with regard to this nation’s more than 56 million Americans with all types of disabilities. Since that historic day, countless barriers have given way to positive progress in education and other realms of life, although much work remains to be done.
As Secretary Betsy DeVos said in July 2017, “Children with disabilities are no less deserving of their civil rights protections than any other student.” True to that commitment, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has remained at the forefront of protecting students with disabilities against discrimination. By vigorously protecting civil rights, OCR has paved the way for students with disabilities to have the same opportunity as is accorded to other students to reach their greatest potential. OCR’s enforcement of the ADA has resulted in increased access and opportunities for students with disabilities at preschools, elementary and secondary schools, apprenticeship programs, libraries, and colleges and universities nationwide.
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