CHICAGO (KFVS) - To honor the 21st anniversary of the historic signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Governor Pat Quinn has proclaimed July 14 Americans with Disabilities Act Day in the state of Illinois.
The Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) will sponsor a special event showcasing Illinois' commitment to ADA at the James R. Thomson Center in Chicago.
"We're committed to keeping the promise of equality and continuing to improve the quality of life for people with disabilities," said IDHS Secretary Michelle R.B. Saddler. "During fiscal year 2011, the IDHS Division of Rehabilitation Services helped nearly 4,500 individuals enter the workforce and live independently. The Americans with Disabilities Act has been instrumental in changing public attitudes and facilitates greater inclusion of persons with disabilities in today's society."
This year's celebration, "Keeping the Promise of Equality," will highlight the talents and accomplishments of people with disabilities through an art exhibit, entertainment provided by performers with disabilities, interactive exhibits, workshops and a three-on-three wheelchair basketball exhibition.
The Federal ADA was signed into law in 1990. More than 30 years ago, Illinois passed its own law protecting the rights of persons with disabilities. The Illinois Human Rights Act has been on the books since December 6, 1979. It prohibits discrimination against any person with a "physical or mental disability."
For more information about IDHS programs and services for persons with disabilities, visit www.dhs.state.il.us.