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Report shows capitol buildings are not ADA compliant

Of all the places that our Colorado readers would probably expect to be in line with federal regulations regarding workplace safety, Washington, D.C., would likely be at the very top of the list. However, according to a recent report, the grounds of the U.S. Capitol as well as many other Congressional office buildings are not in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act when it comes to ensuring a safe work environment for employees with a disability.

Some of the particular issues where these work environments failed to comply with the ADA are the many wheelchair ramps in the surrounding areas, which could lead to an employee who uses a wheelchair falling while using the ramps. Also, in what was labeled as a "random inspection" of some of the restrooms in the office buildings, none of the restrooms were in compliance with ADA regulations.

It seems to be an unfortunate failing of government that the buildings within the federal district of our national government are not in compliance with the ADA. The ADA was enacted to protect workers with disabilities from discrimination based on their condition, and employers are required to provide reasonable accommodation for an employee's disability. Among the most commonly expected accommodations would be proper wheelchair ramps and disability-accessible restrooms.

When an employer fails to comply with the requirements of the ADA, it can make the workplace feel inhospitable for a worker with a disability. Anyone who believes that their employer is not complying with the requirements of the ADA may be able to bring a claim against their employer. That claim could force an employer to take action to bring their workplace up to standards.

Source: ABC News, "Congressional Workplaces Pose Safety Risks for Disabled," Sunlen Miller, Oct. 18, 2012

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