What is the ADA?
The Americans with Disabilities Act is a federal law intended to protect people with disabilities from discrimination, and improve accessibility in any public accommodation (business). The Americans with Disabilities Act applies to any business that sells services or goods. This law states that all new construction from 2011 and after is built with an accessible design and that all businesses must comply with all ADA regulations. The law also demands equal opportunities for employment and protects disabled employees from discrimination.
Accessible design means adapting your facility to provide a more accessible environment for all Americans - including those with disabilities. And since one in four adults have a disability, it will also open your business to a huge population of people who previously could not access it.
It helps someone with a disability who may be in a wheelchair, or for example have low vision, to have the ability to navigate the facility independently. You can download a copy of the 2010 ADA Standards here.
Mistake #1: No Accessible Parking
One of the most common violations organizations make has to do with providing accessible parking spaces. Having the right number of marked spaces and van-accessible spaces is important for any business. In addition, there must be an accessible route with a curb ramp from the parking spaces to the front door of the facility. It's important for the curb ramps to be at the proper slope range, as well.
Mistake #2: No Parking Signage
Another of the most common violations is not having properly posted ADA signage to clearly identify the parking spots. Make sure van-accessible spots have that determination on them. Keep in mind that there are many specific details you must meet concerning all ADA signs contained in the standards above, to be considered in ADA compliance.
Mistake #3: No Accessible Restrooms
Business facilities must provide accessible restrooms at their location to be in compliance. Some common ADA violations include no wheelchair-accessible stalls, incorrect sink height, or no emergency indicator in the stall (typically a pull-string). In addition, you must have the correct ADA signage posted to be in compliance with ADA requirements.
Mistake #4: Not Allowing Service Animals
All accessible buildings need to have a sign on the door that allows for service animals. One of the most common violations is a 'no pets' policy, which is against the ADA's requirements for a business to be compliant. A person who has a disability that needs their service animal with them for assistance is, by law, allowed to bring the trained service animal into any facility. Make sure your business is compliant.
Mistake #5: Not Having ADA Compliant Signs
This is by far one of the most common ADA violations for business facilities today. Not having the proper signs for your facilities is not being compliant with the ADA. Be sure to consult local laws to see exactly what is specified, as additional requirements may apply. For general information, resources, or legal advice you can visit here. You can get any ADA sign you need for your building, even custom sign work, here at ADA Central - where we specialize in ADA compliant signs.
There are fairly heavy consequences for any ADA violation found in your building, including steep fines of up to $50,000 for the first violation and $100,000 for any subsequent violation. In addition, depending on your location, you could face litigation and permanent harm to your business reputation. Business owners should check all buildings in every location to ensure there are no ADA violations.
ADA Central is the authority on ADA compliant signage, with a huge stock in our inventory and the ability to do high-quality custom sign work as well. We can answer any questions concerning ADA signs you may have, and we also do expedited orders! Check out our homepage right here on this website. ADA Central understands that the ADA Standards can be confusing and difficult to follow. When you need ADA compliant signage for your building, contact the folks who specialize in ADA signs, right here at ADA Central.
ADA compliance regulations are not just here in this country. The idea is to have a unified system everywhere, which is why it's so important to follow the specific details of these standards so closely. The height of any posted ADA sign, the type of lettering or pictogram each of them requires, and where they are posted is important so that anyone with a disability will know exactly where to look for this vital information and have the ability to navigate any public building.
Recently there have been a lot of lawsuits won over having a non-compliant website, therefore if you sell goods or services online and do not have a physical location, you must still have an ADA compliant website. Be advised, there are no 'quick fixes' (i.e. overlays) to this problem - you must consult with a web designer who specializes in ADA compliant websites. The standards for website accessibility can be found here. Remember ADA Central for all your ADA compliant signage and get your site in compliance today!