A Closer Look at the Americans with Disabilities Act

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Signed into law in July 1990 by President George H.W. Bush, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is one of the most noteworthy and inclusive pieces of civil rights legislation in the country’s history. Under the ADA, discrimination against individuals with disabilities is prohibited; any person with a disability has the same rights as any other American, including purchasing goods and services, participating in state and local government programs and working for an organization.

This law enables  individuals with disabilities around the country to have the same opportunities as all other Americans. Those who are interested in learning more about the ADA and how to advocate for those with disabilities should consider enrolling in the online   at Hofstra Law. Upon graduation, you’ll  better understand the process through which the court system interprets and applies legislation, specifically regarding the ADA.

Let’s take a closer look at what you need to know about the ADA, and how an education at Hofstra Law can prepare you for your professional journey in health law and policy.

Student reading annotating ada text

What do you need to know about the ADA?

If you’re pursuing a master’s degree in health law and policy, it’s critical that you understand the core tenets of the ADA, especially the different areas in which people with disabilities are protected. This law consists of five different sections, which include: Title 1 (employment), Title II (public services, programs and activities), Title III (public accommodations), Title IV (telecommunications) and Title V (miscellaneous provisions.)

Title I: Employment

According to ADA National Network, the first title was created to provide those with disabilities access to the same employment opportunities and benefits as those without. Enforced by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, this law forbids any type of discrimination in the workplace during the hiring and firing process, as well as with payroll, assignments, promotions, layoffs and providing benefits.

Title II: Public services, programs and activities

All U.S. citizens are granted rights to the programs, activities and services provided by state and local government services. All Americans have the right to participate in health care, social services, public transportation, voting, town hall meetings and educational opportunities.

Title III: Public accommodations

This title prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities regarding public accommodations such as hotels, restaurants, retail stores, private schools, day care centers, movie theaters, country clubs and other commercial facilities. All businesses that offer accommodations to the public must ensure they make modifications to give those with disabilities the opportunity to enjoy the offerings as well.

Title IV: Telecommunications

Under Title IV, all telephone and internet companies are required to provide interstate and intrastate telecommunications services that allow those with speech and hearing disabilities the opportunity to communicate. This includes relay services over the phone and closed captioning options on all

Title V: Miscellaneous provisions

The final title was created to protect various significant provisions which are not included under the previous titles. Another important provision concerns reverse discrimination, which doesn’t protect someone who was discriminated against because they don’t have a disability.

What you can learn about the ADA at Hofstra Law

The coursework in Hofstra Law’s online master’s in health law and policy programs is designed to help you examine laws from a state and federal perspective and learn how they’ve helped to shape the American health care system over the years. Because the ADA is one of the most comprehensive pieces of civil rights legislation in the U.S., it’s critical that you have a firm understanding of this subject matter. That’s why there’s an entire course dedicated to the ADA.

The ADA: Statutory Interpretation examines the fundamentals of statutory interpretation of the ADA. This course teaches you how to apply your knowledge of the ADA to statutory interpretation through doctrinal context. By the end of the course, you will know how to explain fundamental principles of statutory interpretation, engage in meaningful discussion in relation to legislation, understand judicial rulings through statutory text and apply the fundamentals of statutory interpretation in real-life scenarios.

If you’re interested in learning more about the ADA and how it relates to a career in health law, considering enrolling in the online Master of Laws or online Master of Arts in Health Law and Policy program at Hofstra Law. No matter which program you choose, you’ll learn everything from ethics and public policy to health care compliance and representing health care providers. The knowledge gained throughout your tenure can be easily transferred and applied to a new career in health law and policy, no matter your legal background.

Learn more about how you can advance your career and earn an online master’s in health law and policy by visiting the program page. For more information, contact an enrollment advisor today.


Recommended Readings:

Understanding Mobile Health Laws

5 Health Care Laws Protecting the Rights of Patients


Americans with Disabilities Act: A Guide to the ADA


American Psychological Association

Master of arts in health law and policy

Master of Arts in health law and policy curriculum



Mid Atlantic ADA Center