Americans with Disabilities Act

Used by permission. © Tom Olin - Tom Olin Collection.

The Americans With Disabilities Act was signed into law by President George H.W. Bush in 1990. But like any civil-rights legislation, it required a fight. And photographer Tom Olin was on the front lines

The Children's Institute of Pittsburgh

Gardening is a satisfying hobby for many who have green thumbs, but for people with physical disabilities or other limitations, it can be an intimidating or impossible activity.

Mark Nootbaar / 90.5 FM WESA

Alisa Grishman has dealt with the effects of Multiple Sclerosis, or MS, for 15 years. And though the Americans with Disabilities Act aims to make life easier for those with disabilities, she can find it frustrating.

“In my opinion, one of the failings of how the ADA was written is that it’s a complaint-driven law and you have to complain all the time,” said Grishman.

Jennifer Szweda Jordan / 90.5 WESA

Smart home resident Michael Rankin loves his oven. 

“If you put your arm on it, you don’t get burned,” he said.

The induction stovetop, which works by heating only when certain types of pots or pans are on top, stays cool to the touch even when it’s being used. That technology is one of a myriad of clever features incorporated into a "smart home" in Aliquippa designed to cater to its four inhabitants all living with disabilities.

Is Access To An Organ Transplant A Right?

Aug 3, 2015

State Sen. John Sabatina (D-Philadelphia) believes the Americans with Disabilities Act has greatly improved access to the physical world and employment for those with special needs since its passage 25 years ago, but says it has fallen short when it comes to protecting life.

Individuals with mental or physical disabilities are often denied the opportunity to be listed on organ transplant lists because of their disability, he said. Sabatina introduced legislation to change that as a House member in February, and said he intends to file a similar measure as a freshman member of the Senate.

Flickr user SOZIALHELDEN

The Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law 25 years ago on Sunday.

The act was a major step toward full-scale accessibility for citizens with disabilities, but according to many, there are still substantial barriers in place.