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Assistive Technology - Law

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The Assistive Technology Act of 1998 is the major legislation involving assistive technology. The "Tech Act," as it is sometimes called, funds 56 state programs designed to address the assistive technology needs of individuals with disabilities. In addition, many other federal laws have significant assistive technology components, including the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Sections 504 and 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1993, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and the Telecommunications Act of 1996. This page provides selective links to sites or sections of sites that specifically deal with assistive technology and the law. Be sure to see the related subjects for more information these laws.
 
This page includes:
 
AT and the Assistive Technology Act of 1998
 
 Assistive Technology Act of 1998 (text) or Assistive Technology Act of 1998 (pdf)
The Assistive Technology Act of 1998 provides grants to the states to address the assistive technology needs of individuals with disabilities." These links provide the full text of the law from the Government Printing Office Website.
 
 RESNA Technical Assistance Project > Policy Information Pipeline > Telecommunications/Information Technology
The RESNA Technical Assistance Project provides technical assistance to the 56 state assistive technology programs. This page provides policy resources relating to Section 508, Section 255, the digital divide, FCC, web accessibility, and other topics.
 
AT and Section 255 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996
 
 Section 255
Section 255 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 mandates that telecommunications equipment and services - including cell phones and plans - are provided so that someone with a disability can use them. This section of the FCC's website provides information for Section 255 manufacturers and service providers, as well as tips on filing complaints, language in telecom Act, and a Section 255 factsheet.
 
 Telecommunications Act Accessibility Guidelines
The Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board's final guidelines for accessibility, usability, and compatibility of telecommunications equipment and customer premises equipment covered by section 255 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996.
 
AT and Sections 503 and 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1993
 
 Assistive Technology
This section of the U.S. Department of Education's website describes the department's commitment "to support its obligation under Sections 504 and 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, to ensure the accessibility of its programs and activities to individuals with disabilities, specifically its obligation to acquire accessible electronic and information technology."
 
See also Rehabilitation Act of 1993
 
 AT and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
 
 Funding of Assistive Technology - The Public School's Special Education System as a Funding Source: The Cutting Edge
This booklet by Neighborhood Legal Services, Inc. focuses on "IDEA [the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act] and section 504 as funding sources or enforcement tools to ensure that children with disabilities get needed AT. [The] intent is to provide the reader with a working knowledge of the relevant laws, regulations and interpretations of them as they relate to a school's obligation. Armed with this knowledge, attorneys and advocates who specialize in special education law should be well-prepared to advocate for AT."
 
See also Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
 
Related Subjects
 Assistive Technology (Index)
 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
 Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
 Legal Rights
 Rehabilitation Act of 1993
 Resources in your state
 
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