Health care thoughts: First major rewrite of the Americans with Disabilities Act

by Tom aka Rusty Rustbelt

 While We Were Busy Discussing Other Things….

 …. the first major rewrite of regulations for the Americans with Disabilities Act went into effect March 15th. Good news and bad news for workers and employers.

 Overall, what I read looks achievable from an employer viewpoint, and the Obama administration has shown some common sense (building owners who spent money to meet the prior rules will not have to immediately tear up their buildings for modifications to meet new rules).

The bad news? The news regs for public swimming pools cannot not be met on time, and the administration has issued a 60 day reprieve to prevent the closer of most of the pools in the country. (Apparently there is not enough qualified equipment or enough service techs to retrofit tens of thousands of pools in any timely manner.) Eventually the administration may inadvertently shut down many of the therapy pools used by …. the disabled.

The other bad news I see is the definition of “disabled” is now murky again, after the feds and employers and the courts worked for two decades to clarify the previous definitions. This murkiness puts employers acting in good faith in jeopardy for litigation.

This will be progress if applied with common sense.