ADA and Accessibility
The Americans with Disabilities Act, first created in 1990, along with all of its subsequent revisions and amendments, is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities. The purpose of the law is to make sure that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else, and it guarantees equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities in public accommodations, employment, transportation, state and local government services, and telecommunications.
The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 was the first major legislative action focused on protecting individuals with disabilities. Amended three times since initial issuance; 1993, 1998 and 2015; prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in programs receiving Federal financial assistance. Section 504 states “no qualified individual with a disability in the United States shall be excluded from, denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under” any program receiving Federal financial assistance. Section 508 sets standards for digital technology accessibility including electronic and information technology developed, maintained, procured or used by Federal funds recipients.
Our office coordinates compliance with, and serves as a resource regarding the ADA across the LSU community. We work closely with other campus offices to provide guidance on compliance efforts, help ensure appropriate accommodation for individuals with disabilities, provide training and resources, and ensure policies and procedures are consistent with the law and best practices.
Accessibility and Accommodations
Planned accessibility is forethought in programs, services, events and activities recognizing a broad range of needs may exist for attendees. Accessibility is the baseline of equitable service and accommodation is the second step when planned accessibility doesn’t meet the need of a specific individual or group of individuals.
Complaints and Concerns
- A complaint is notice to LSU asking the institution to take action in response to a potential limitation or denial of benefit to an individual or individuals based on disability. The limitation or denial of benefit may be in the course of employment, education and/or any other engagement in programs and services offered by LSU.
- Concerns are issues LSU may need to remedy to ensure accessibility to our facilities, programs and services. Examples may include, but are not limited to, notice of a tree root impeding access to a sidewalk, an automatic door button is no longer working, temporary barrier limiting entry or sidewalk access or an event held at a location limiting access.
- No one is required to disclose a disability. However, for one to receive accommodations, through Disability Services or the ADA Coordinator, one must submit information evidencing the unique nature of the individual’s limitations.
- Disclosure of limitations due to disability, and accompanying paperwork, remain private within the office tasked with providing accommodations. In the interactive process the tasked office may seek additional information regarding the essential elements of a course or job, but the information regarding the individual’s diagnosis, limitations and other private information will remain private and is not shared. The only information shared with a faculty member or supervisor will be the information necessary to implement the approved accommodations. However, students are responsible for providing the accommodation letter from DS to their respective faculty members.