Understanding the laws and regulations

The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 require that qualified individuals with disabilities be provided equal access to programs, services, or activities.

ADAAA The Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA): This was revised March 15, 2011 to clarify and widen the definition of "disability" therefore more people may be covered under the ADA.
http://ada-one.com/focus/higher-education/

Section 504 is a federal law designed to protect the rights of individuals with disabilities in programs and activities that receive Federal financial assistance from the U.S. Department of Education (ED).

Section 508 was enacted to eliminate barriers in information technology, to make available new opportunities for people with disabilities, and to encourage development of technologies that will help achieve these goals. 508 is basically a set of guidelines (best practices) with website usability.

Title III- equal rights and access to services, programs, library etc. (This includes online services, access, online programs/classrooms) Especially those services, websites etc that are available to the public at large)


21st Century Communications Act


In addition to the other laws and acts that support equal rights for persons with disabilities the new 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act is on it's way to enactment. The president signed the bill on Oct.8, 2010.

Basically, this Act establishes new 'safeguards' or standards so that the new generation of technology (especially around video and web-based communications) are produced in a way that is accessible to persons with disabilities. The act has been referred to as the

Here is a link from the National Association of the Deaf that goes into much more detail about the Act.
http://www.nad.org/issues/civil-rights/communications-act/21st-century-act