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EEOC to Hold Public ADA Meeting in Washington

June 16 2009 | by

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) will meet Wednesday in Washington to consider new regulations covering the recently amended Americans with Disabilities Act. The meeting will begin at 10 a.m. at EEOC agency headquarters and will be open to the public.

The 2008 Amendments Act, which was signed by President George Walker Bush and went into effect Jan. 1, 2009, emphasizes that the definition of disability should be construed in favor of broad coverage of individuals to the maximum extent permitted by the terms of the ADA and generally shall not require extensive analysis.

The Act also makes important changes to the definition of the term “disability” by rejecting the holdings in several Supreme Court decisions and portions of EEOC’s ADA regulations. The effect of these changes is to make it easier for an individual seeking protection under the ADA to establish that he or she has a disability within the meaning of the ADA.

Congress expects the EEOC to revise its regulations to “conform to changes made by the Act,” and expressly authorizes the EEOC to do so. The EEOC is the federal agency charged with ending employment discrimination and enforces Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Any rules changes approved at Wednesday’s meeting represent an initial stage in the regulatory process and must next go to the Office of Management and Budget and federal agencies for review.

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