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The rehabilitation act of 1973 - Research Paper Example

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The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 can be described as giving civil rights to the disabled members of American society. These rights however are limited to rights within government funds organizations. As early as 1968 a bill was proposed which, if passed, would give legal protection to disabled people…
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Download file to see previous pages It is one of a number of United States laws concerned with discrimination such as the Americans with Disabilities Act, (1990), the Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act, ( 1997) and the Fair Housing Act ( 1968). The act has been amended twice – in 1993 and then once more in 1998, perhaps reflecting changes in public perceptions. The legislation has its own administrators - the Rehabilitation Services Administration. The aim is to prevent any discrimination, intentional or unintentional, which has its basis in a person's disability. Under Section 501 there is a requirement for affirmative action and an absence of discrimination in employment. Section 503 is concerned with contractors and sub-contractors. The next section, 504 allows for what are described as ‘reasonable accommodation. It provides for the provision to be incorporated into new constructions. Each of the federal agencies have their own version of the sections 504 regulations, for which the individual agency is responsible for regulating. Although these rules do vary, they have a common core which includes making accommodation for their disabled employees, making programs accessible and ensuring effective communication, especially with those people who have hearing or sight difficulties. The regulations allow funding for the provision of accessible new constructions as well as for making alterations to existing establishments. Section 508 includes a requirement for Federal electronic and information technology to be made accessible to those with disabilities. This means that such information must be available in a number of formats so that it can be used by those without disabilities as well as those with sight or hearing problems. This includes state employees, but also for members of the public who need information provided by such agencies. This begs the questions of definitions, of what is a disability and what can be considered to be ‘reasonable’. The research article in Appendix 1, Diabetes and the Rehabilitation Rights Act, ( 2007) gives the example of someone with a facial deformity which does not prevent them carrying out a particular job without any specific accommodation and is therefore not considered to be a disability. In the case of those with diabetes, under this legislation, students with diabetes have the right to ask for an Individualized Education Plan. However diabetes, like a lot of other such conditions, is a very variable problem, even within one person. There will therefore be times when the condition is well controlled and all that is required is somewhere private where medication can be taken. This should not mean having to do the necessary injections in a toilet cubicle, with all the possible risks of infection involved, even if care is taken. It would be reasonable to require the provision of a safe and private place for medication to be administered. If the condition is proving harder to control then the student may require more support such as staff who know what to do in an emergency if he collapses or shows signs of doing so. There needs to be an action plan in place. The bill is concerned with protecting the person from the ignorance of others - this can be merely to do with ignorance of the condition, but also includes such things as feeling that diabetes are somehow ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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