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Disabled Americans continue to face a crisis

On Behalf of | Jan 24, 2020 | Firm News |

For decades, disabled Americans have looked to the Americans With Disabilities Act for protection. It has given people the rights and opportunities of non-disabled colleagues to seek employment and make a valuable contribution to society.  Disabled persons also began to be better received at not just work but medical facilities, apartments and other facilities and buildings they used often. 

In recent years, disabled Americans have begun to experience more push-back from corporations when it comes to accommodating them. CNN reported that one major airline faced accusations regarding this after limiting the ability for disabled persons with support animals to bring their four-legged helpers on a flight. 

The current administration also followed up with restricting some of the rights and privileges previously offered by the ADA. This was mostly focused on issues related to the accessibility of spaces and the ability to hold businesses accountable for failure to accommodate. 

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission shares that there are several tax initiatives in place to encourage businesses to make spaces more accessible to people with disabilities: 

  • Up to $2,500 as an annual tax credit for employers for each qualifying low-income employee, including disabled persons 
  • Up to $5,000 as an annual tax credit for providing reasonable accommodations for the disabled, such as sign language interpreters and brail writing 
  • Up to $15,000 in annual deductions for providing physical accommodations for people with disabilities, such as parking spaces and wheelchair ramps 

If the strength of the ADA continues to face attack, disabled Americans may have to hope tax incentives for businesses are enough to preserve accessibility. An even better solution would involve businesses taking personal responsibility for improving accessibility regardless of the laws and tax incentives in place.