Document Type

Article

Publication Date

Winter 2010

Publication Source

Indiana Law Journal

Abstract

Although the apparent purpose of the 2008 amendments to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is solely to broaden the ADA 's protected class, the manner in which the amendments achieve this purpose erodes the statute's explicit textual support for understanding persons with disabilities as a politically subordinated minority. The amendments also strengthen the statutory link between the biological severity of a person's disability and that person's right to sue for ADA accommodations. Accordingly, for some courts, the amendments will reinforce the perception that the ADA differs from traditional civil rights law.

Federal courts' understanding of the ADA 's relationship to traditional civil rights law will shape courts' resolution of unresolved questions about the ADA 's scope. Because the ADA, as amended, will now enable more plaintiffs to proceed past the preliminary question of membership in the ADA 's protected class, federal courts will soon be forced to confront broad questions about the ADA 's application. Resolution of these questions will largely turn on courts' understanding of the conceptual relationship between the ADA and traditional civil rights statutes, an underlying question that the recent amendments will unintentionally shape.

Inclusive pages

187-224

ISBN/ISSN

0019-6665

Document Version

Published Version

Comments

This document has been made available for download by permission of the publisher. Subscription information.

Permission documentation is on file.

Publisher

Indiana University Maurer School of Law

Volume

85

Issue

1

Volume

85

Issue

1

Place of Publication

Bloomington, IN


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