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Despite ADA, Advocates Call For More Employment For People With Disabilities

President George H.W. Bush Signs The Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990.
Wikimedia, Public Domain

This Wednesday marks the 27th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The federal law mandates equal access, and prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities nationwide.

Advocate Linda Wetters is former assistant director of the state agency Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities, previously known as the Ohio Rehabilitation Services Commission.  

Wetters says the ADA has gone a long way toward improving employment access and opportunities in Ohio.

“Many of the people who were involved in developing that act were people with disabilities like paraplegia or blind, that today, with a little bit of assistance those people are getting employment through regular channels. We are more comfortable with that now than we were 25 years ago," she says.

Still, Wetters says she’d like to see additional state and federal incentives to encourage employers to hire people with disabilities. She says better transit options are also needed to help people with disabilities, particularly outside urban areas, access job opportunities.