Title II- Government Services Title II, sub-title A, of the ADA prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities in State and local government services, programs, and activities. Sub-title B deals with transportation.
Title II and III of the Americans with Disabilities Act: An Overview • This presentation was developed by the Idaho Task Force on the Americans with Disabilities Act, and is provided at no cost solely for training purposes. It cannot be altered except by written permission from the Idaho Task Force on the ADA. None of the contents of this presentation is intended to provide legal advice. It is intended only to provide a general overview of the ADA. Please direct questions about specific situations to your legal counsel.
Three Major Categories Employment Government Contact Government Programs and Services
Employment Government Employment is covered the same as Title I rules. Nondiscriminatory practices should be used in hiring, firing, recruiting and reasonable accommodations.
Government Contacts Examples of contacts include: Communication with the public (telephone contacts, office walk-ins, or interviews) Public's use of the entity's facilities
Government Contacts ILLUSTRATION 1: A city engages in a joint venture with a private corporation to build a new professional sports stadium. Where public and private entities act jointly, the public entity must ensure that the relevant requirements of title II are met; and the private entity must ensure compliance with title III. Consequently, the new stadium would have to be built in compliance with the accessibility guidelines of both titles II and III. In cases where the standards differ, the stadium would have to meet the standard that provides the highest degree of access to individuals with disabilities.
Government Services ILLUSTRATION 2: A private, nonprofit corporation operates a number of group homes under contract with a State agency for the benefit of individuals with mental disabilities. These particular homes provide a significant enough level of social services to be considered places of public accommodation under title III. The State agency must ensure that its contracts are carried out in accordance with title II, and the private entity must ensure that the homes comply with title III.
Program Accessibility • Access to programs and services or benefit • Permanent or temporary • Anything offered to or involving the public
Physical Accessibility • Alterations must meet new construction standards • Built after 1992 is considered new construction • Option of using UFAS or ADAAG
To be in compliance a city is required to: • Conduct a self-evaluation • ADA Coordinator • Establish a complaint process • Develop transition plan
Filing a Title II Complaint • DOJ complaint form • Hire/train attorney
Title III Public Accommodations Prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities by: Privately operated public accommodations Commercial facilities Private entities offering certain examinations and courses
What does public accommodation mean? Any private entity that: Owns Leases or leases to Operates a place of public accommodation
A private entity may be: Individual person Company Business Other entity
Inn, hotel, motel, place of lodging Restaurant, bar, establishment serving food or drink Movie theater, theater, concert hall, stadium, place of exhibition or entertainment Auditorium, convention center, lecture hall, union hall, place of public gathering Bakery, grocery store, clothing store, hardware store, shopping center Public Accommodations fall within at least one of the following categories:
ADA Fact All Public Accommodations are covered under Title III regardless of their size
Landlord and tenant responsibilities • Landlord who owns building including the public accommodation AND • Tenant who owns and operates the place of public accommodation are considered public accommodations and are fully responsible for complying with ADA requirements
Exemption • Elevators are not required when • Under three stories • Smaller than 3000 square feet • Not a shopping center or medical facility
Service animals Generally speaking, an accommodation that does not allow pets would have to modify this rule for people with disabilities who use a service animal.
What is a Service Animal? • Trained to perform a specific task? • Companion Animals are not defined by the US Department of Justice.
What about existing facilities? • Existing public accommodations are subject to a readily achievable barrier removal requirement.
Removing Barriers • A business needs to do readily achievable barrier removal which means • Easily accomplishable and able to be carried out without significant difficulty or expense.
Removing Barriers • Usually done just for access • Can use alteration guidelines • Accessible route • Readily achievable barrier removal checklist
Architectural barriers include: • Steps and curbs for people in wheelchairs • Telephones, drinking fountains, mirrors, paper towel dispensers mounted too high • Conventional door knobs and operating controls for people with limited manual dexterity
Providing a ramp Adding a grab bar in the restroom Rearranging toilet partitions to increase maneuvering space Installing a paper cup dispenser at an existing inaccessible fountain Removing high-pile, low density carpeting Adding flashing alarm lights Examples of readily achievable barrier removal:
ADA Fact Readily achievable barrier removal is not just a one time obligation.
What are the recommended priorities for readily achievable barrier removal? • Access to the facility (ramps, entrances, parking) • Access to the area where goods and services are provided (rearranging racks and tables, accessible signage, wider doors, visual alarms, ramps) • Access to restrooms (if available to the public)
What if readily achievable barrier removal is not possible? If readily achievable barrier removal is not possible a public accommodation must make its goods and services available through alternative methods.
Alternative methods of service delivery may include: • Curb service • Retrieving merchandise • Relocating activities to an accessible facility
What about new construction? • Buildings are covered under new construction requirements if they were ready for first occupancy after January 26, 1992. • New construction must be readily accessible and useable by people with disabilities. • This means compliance with DOJ regulations and the ADA Accessibility Guidelines (ADAAG).
ADA Fact New construction requirements apply to both public accommodations and commercial facilities (e.g. warehouses, factories and private offices)
Exemption • Elevators are not required when • Under three stories • Smaller than 3000 square feet • Not a shopping center or medical facilities
Let’s talk about alterations. The ADA requires that altered areas of a facility must be readily accessible to and useable by people with disabilities to the maximum extent feasible.
Remodeling -- Alterations • Remodeling must meet new construction standards • Twenty percent of total • Maintenance is not considered remodeling
Historic buildings Alterations to buildings that are listed or eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places, or are designated as historic places under state or local law, must comply to the maximum extent feasible to the ADA Accessibility Guidelines.
As a matter of fact… • Historic buildings are required to meet ADAAG standards unless doing so would threaten or destroy the historic significance of a feature. • Alternative standards may be used for that feature in this case • This decision must be made in consultation with an advisory board outlined in the ADAAG.
Alternative standards could be: • Accessible route from one access point • Ramps steeper than ordinary • Accessible entrance not used by the general public • Only one accessible unisex toilet required • Accessible route only required to the accessible entrance
In rare cases: When even these minimal requirements cannot be met because they would destroy a historical feature an alternative such as a video or photograph can be provided for display in inaccessible areas.
Tax credits for small business • Businesses that have gross receipts up of up to $1,000,000 for the year OR • Up to 30 full-time employees • May take a tax credit for 50% of the amount of any expenses incurred complying with the ADA over $250 up to $10,250. The maximum yearly credit is $5,000.
Enforcement Individuals may file a complaint with the Department of Justice. The DOJ will process administrative complaints and pursue selected cases. Send in a signed mediation form for a quicker response Individuals may file a private law suit that may result in a court order to comply with the law and attorney fees but no money damages.
Government Money Fair Housing and the ADA
The Fair Housing Act as amended in 1988 Prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, disability, familial status and national origin
Which entities does the Fair Housing Act cover? • Private housing • Housing projects that receive Federal funds • State and local government housing
Let’s talk about requirements for housing landlords Landlords must make reasonable exceptions in their policies and operations to give people with disabilities equal housing opportunities.
For example… A landlord with a “no pets” policy may be required to grant an exception to this rule and allow an individual who is blind to have a guide dog in the residence.
Assistive animals are also allowed. These are animals that assist tenants with disabilities in making more effective use of their housing including, but not limited to, alerting individuals with hearing impairments to intruders or sounds, pulling a wheelchair, fetching items or providing emotional support to persons with mental disabilities.
What about parking? An apartment complex that allows tenants ample, unassigned parking must honor a request from a mobility-impaired tenant for a reserved space near her apartment if necessary to assure that she can have access to her apartment.
However… A landlord does not have to make housing available to a person who is a direct threat to the health or safety of others or who currently uses illegal drugs.
What if an apartment or house is not accessible to a tenant with a disability? The law requires that landlords allow tenants with disabilities to make modifications in their private living space, as well as common living spaces.