504 of the Rehabilitation Act

April 28, 2010 at 3:26 pm Leave a comment

Disability Leader, Judy Heumann, interviewed by media in 1977In April, 1977, after years of waiting for federal guidelines, disability activists lost patience with the government’s delaying tactics and staged protests around the country. The 504 Sit-In demanded enforcement of the first major law to bar discrimination against the disabled. A dramatic twenty-five-day occupation of the federal office building in San Francisco galvanized people and created a strong sense of purpose and pride. The protests drew national attention, and on April 28, 1977, the government finally released the regulations.

Section 504 requires federal grantees to make their programs and jobs accessible to qualified people with disabilities.

“No otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States, as defined in section 7(20), shall, solely by reason of her or his disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance or under any program or activity conducted by any Executive agency or by the United States Postal Service.”

Congress reauthorized the Rehabilitation Act in 1978 and inserted funding to establish Centers for Independent Living.

Visit the 504 Sit-In’s website at  www.dredf.org/504site/504home.html

Get more information on Section 504 visit www.section508.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Content&ID=15

By Tony Trott, ECNV Peer Mentor & Editor

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Entry filed under: Disability History. Tags: , .

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