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American with Disabilities Act of 1990 - Case Study Example

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People with disabilities have been treated with discrimination throughout human history. In previous centuries it was common for disabled people to be considered as liabilities for the family. …
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American with Disabilities Act of 1990
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Download file to see previous pages Hence it was common to hide or disown disabled individuals to the extent that most of them died. It was not until the later part of the nineteenth century that some form of organised governmental effort came forward to address this issue. Government sponsored care facilities were created but these were often understaffed, overcrowded and filled with instances of abuse and neglect. It was not considered that disabled people could actually contribute positively to society with their efforts through proper training and support. A major change occurred after the First World War when veterans with disabilities returned from the war in the 1920’s. The massive amounts of people who were rendered disabled by the war could just not be left out in the streets to starve to death and neither could the government afford to care for such a large number of people. Moreover the number of people rendered disabled due to industrial accidents was also on the rise as industry was not promoting safety in operations to drive profit margins up. The Second World War and the immediate aftermath of the Korean War witnessed a greater amount of disabled persons trying to become members of the normal society again. Although certain institutions and training efforts had been put in place after the First World War but the structural framework was not strong enough to support the weight of new entrants. Another major noticeable issue here is that efforts to help out disabled people were focused largely on people disabled during military or industrial service and not people born with disability. (ADA, 2009) As the numbers of disabled persons trying to renter society increased, there was a marked increase in the number of welfare and entitlement programs that were presented as alternatives to total care institutions. Another major factor was the advancements in medical technologies that enabled a number of people to survive disease and otherwise fatal accidents that again led to an increase in the numbers of disabled people. The foundations for rehabilitation based professions were laid down around this time. However most of the people involved in rehabilitation and other such programs were often non disabled persons and hence their comprehension of the problems was largely superficial. Most of the organisations that evolved in this fashion began to push for legislative and policy based changes so that there were some segregated and sheltered changes allowed for people with disabilities. However the impact of these changes was not widely felt. This phase also gave rise to charities that began to support the cause of disabled people. In a sense this signalled the formation of a movement that would later transform into a coherent force to fight for the rights of disabled people. Following the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960’s, the disabled factions of society were also spurred into action to claim their rights and privileges. The movement for the rights of disabled people gathered greater momentum after most of its leaders and spokespersons originated from the disabled people themselves. The first national cross disability organisation emerged as a result in the 1970’s which served to further the rights of disabled people by a substantial degree. Perhaps the greatest achievement of this movement was to reject all kinds of paternalistic treatment meted out to disabled individuals. This enabled the disabled people to reject formerly delivered “charitable” treatment and to realise their full potential. The real strides in legislative and policy matters on disability can be traced back to this change. (Job ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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