Jan 152015
 

The 1990 Americans with Disability Act (ADA) is a broad civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on one’s disability. It provides protections against discrimination for Americans with disabilities in much the same way as the 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibited discrimination against race, religion, natural origin and gender. A disability is defined as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits at least one major life activity. These activities include seeing, walking, sitting, lifting, breathing, learning, working and many more. It is estimated that 20% of all Americans have at least one diagnosed physical or psychological disability. There are more than 40 million Americans who are disabled today. One of the main reasons for the ADA is to insure access and accommodations for Americans with disabilities in our places of work. Advocates say removing the barriers to employment, transportation, public accommodations and services enable people who are disabled to better contribute to society, benefiting us all. Most of the opposition to the ADA comes from businesses, churches and other public places that require physical modification of their facilities. ADA critics say we’ve gone overboard on these regulations. They claim unscrupulous attorneys often file lawsuits against property owners before giving them an opportunity to respond or correct problems related to limited access to their facilities.

Pending Legislation:

H.R.994 – ACCESS (ADA Compliance for Customer Entry to Stores and Services) Act of 2013

I oppose reforming current Americans with Disabilities Act policy and wish to defeat H.R.994

I support prohibiting an aggrieved person from commencing a civil action for discrimination based on the failure to remove a structural barrier to entry into an existing public accommodation unless the owner or operator of such accommodation: is provided a written notice specific enough to identify such barrier; and has, within specified time periods, either failed to provide the aggrieved person with a written description outlining improvements that will be made to remove such barrier or provided such description and failed to remove such barrier, and wish to pass H.R.994

 Posted by at 12:00 am
Jan 152015
 

Our Social Security Administration considers people to be disabled if medical conditions prevent them from doing their regular jobs and if they are unable to adapt to a new occupation. There is a record 11 million American workers currently receiving federal disability benefits, many of them temporarily. Permanently disabled workers will receive modest support for the rest of their lives. Many American workers with disabilities are also employed. However, the Fair labor Standards Act of 1938 legally allows workers that are disabled to be paid wages that are less than minimum wage. Workers with various sensory, physical, cognitive or developmental disabilities often work in segregated workplaces called “sheltered workshops.” The federal government purchases some of products made in these workshops to help provide employment to these Americans. There are at least 300,000 workers with disabilities who are paid les than minimum wage. Advocates claim this allows some employers to exploit these workers. They say that those with disabilities, given proper training and support, have the ability and right to work in most jobs earning the same wages as their peers.

Pending Legislation:

H.R.831 – Fair Wages for Workers with Disabilities Act of 2013

I oppose reforming current workers with disabilities policy and wish to defeat H.R.831

I support directing the Secretary of Labor to discontinue issuing to any new profit or non-profit or governmental entity special wage certificates (which permit individuals with disabilities, including individuals employed in agriculture, to be paid at lower than minimum wages); amending the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to repeal authority and requirements for the issuance of such certificates three years after enactment of this Act; requiring revocation of any certificates remaining at that time, and wish to pass H.R.831

 Posted by at 12:00 am
Jan 152015
 

The path to rehabilitating an injury or disability is most often a long and arduous one that involves many factors beyond the person or the injury itself. Some of these factors include the state of rehabilitation research, the availability of knowledgeable therapists and quality rehab facilities as well as the support of society. The National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research conducts research related to the rehabilitation of Americans with disabilities. Its mission is to improve the lives of people with disabilities from birth through adulthood and to advocate for opportunities and accommodations for these citizens. The 1973 Rehabilitation Act authorizes programs for vocational rehabilitation, supported employment, independent living, client assistance and a variety of training and grant programs administered by the Rehabilitation Services Administration. The Act also requires federal agencies to provide equal and meaningful access to programs and services to Americans with disabilities.

Pending Legislation:

S.367 & H.R.713 – Medicare Access to Rehabilitation Services Act of 2013

S.602 & H.R.1252 – Physical Therapist Workforce and Patient Access Act of 2013

S.948 & H.R.942 – Ensuring Access to Quality Complex Rehabilitation Technology Act of 2013

I oppose reforming current rehabilitation policy and wish to defeat S.367 & H.R.713, S.602 & H.R.1252, and S.948 & H.R.942

I support amending title XVIII (Medicare) of the Social Security Act to repeal the caps on Medicare outpatient rehabilitation physical therapy services and speech-language pathology services, and wish to pass S.367 & H.R.713

I support amending the Public Health Service Act to include physical therapy within the definition of “primary health services” for purposes of the National Health Service Corps; making physical therapists eligible for repayment of their educational loans in order to ensure an adequate supply of physical therapists, and wish to pass S.602 & H.R.1252

I support amending title XVIII (Medicare) of the Social Security Act to cover, as medical and other health services, complex rehabilitation technology items designed and configured for a specific qualified individual to meet that individual’s unique: medical, physical, and functional needs related to a medical condition; and capacities for basic activities of daily living, and wish to pass S.948 & H.R.942

 Posted by at 12:00 am