Throughout the month of July, Johnson County will remember the 30th anniversary of the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Since it was enacted in 1990, the ADA has directly affected the lives of millions of people who were previously disenfranchised because of their disabilities. Diversity, equity and inclusion are priorities for Johnson County in all the services it provides to residents as well as in finding and hiring employees.
One of the people who directly benefited from the ADA’s protections was De Linda Brite, a case manager for Deaf Adult Services with Johnson County Developmental Supports.
“[The ADA] has impacted me immensely,” said Brite. “I remember watching President Bush signing this into law, wondering just how much would it actually support me and my rights. Let’s see, if it wasn’t for this law, I would not have had this opportunity to gain all those years of experiences in human services (and two college degrees) and I would most likely not be working with Johnson County Mental Health. I would not have an interpreter in the delivery room, signing ‘It’s a GIRL!,’ moments after I gave birth. I would not be able to order a pizza delivery on my own. I would not be able to sit in my recliner and watch a favorite TV show with captions, and I would not be able to call my mother through a videophone to wish her a Happy Mother’s Day.”
Hear more from De Linda Brite and learn more about the history of the ADA in the next edition of JoCo Magazine, coming in September.