SD celebrates 25th anniversary of Americans with Disabilities Act
PIERRE, S.D. – Sunday marks the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Celebrations of the signing of the ADA by President George H.W. Bush on July 26, 1990, are taking place across the nation and South Dakota.
Gov. Dennis Daugaard proclaimed July 26, 2015, as “Americans with Disabilities Act Day.” He highlighted the significance of the anniversary by celebrating “the contributions Americans with disabilities have made to our state” and the intent to “rededicate ourselves to empowering every individual with equal access and equal opportunity.” (Visit dhs.sd.gov to view Executive Proclamation online.)
The city of Sioux Falls hosted a celebration July 13, and other cities across South Dakota are hosting their own events through the end of the month, including Aberdeen, Brookings and Rapid City, to name just some. Celebrations will include everything from public mayoral proclamations and ice cream socials to medical equipment drives and picnics. (Visit dhs.sd.gov to access an online list of some of South Dakota’s ADA anniversary events.)
“With all the celebratory events taking place throughout the state, it’s clear South Dakota’s communities are making great strides to realize the dream of the Americans with Disabilities Act,” said state Department of Human Services Secretary Gloria Pearson, who spoke at the July 13 event in Sioux Falls. “The state continues to develop and promote the equal opportunity, independence and full participation of people with disabilities in our neighborhoods, communities and society.”
The ADA and the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA) give civil rights protections to individuals with disabilities similar to those provided to individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, age and religion. The ADA and ADAAA also assure equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities for access to businesses, employment, transportation, state and local government programs and services, and telecommunications.