Rockford… On July 26, 1990, President George H.W. Bush signed into law the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to ensure the civil rights of people with disabilities. This legislation established a clear and comprehensive national mandate for the elimination of discrimination against individuals with disabilities.
On Sunday, State Representative John M. Cabello (R-Machesney Park) and local RAMP leaders celebrated the 25th anniversary of the signing of the ADA with legislation of their own, which Governor Bruce Rauner signed into law.
“The signing of House Bill 4049 is a great step forward for the disability community. With a signature Illinois laws will now reflect the language being used by individuals with disabilities who make up 20 percent of the population. In taking this step the State of Illinois is recognizing the work of advocates in the Disability Rights movement across the country to elevate, educate, and infiltrate individuals with disabilities to equal status at all levels of the communities in which they live. Disability Rights ARE Civil Rights.”
House Bill 4049 removes antiquated language from current statutes in Illinois and replaces those terms with Person First Language. For example, the law changes all occurrences of “the physically handicapped” to “persons with physical disabilities”, changes all occurrences of “the handicapped” or “handicapped persons” or “handicapped individuals” to “persons with disabilities”, and changes all occurrences of “handicapping condition” to “disabling condition”.
“I was honored that RAMP reached out to me to carry this monumental legislation,” said Rep. Cabello. “Their staff is always going above what is asked to help the community and I deeply appreciate their effort to get this legislation passed. It’s important we continue to recognize the progress that has been made through ADA and that we strive towards reaching full ADA compliance in Illinois.”
House Bill 4049 has an immediate effective date.