Introduction page 3
Reaching Out to Customers With Disabilities: Introduction A convenience store employee reaches for a bottle of juice from the top rack of a drink cooler for a woman using a power wheelchair.
Lesson 10: Information SourcesLesson 6: Maintaining AccessibilityLesson 8: Cost IssuesLesson 7: Transporting CustomersLesson 5: Alternate AccessLesson 4: Removing BarriersLesson 1: Policies & Procedures Lesson 3: Accessible DesignLesson 2: Customer CommunicationsLesson 9: ADA Enforcement Introduction: Welcome to the Course

Course overview

Here is a quick overview of the ten issues addressed in this course. The course gives practical information on each of these topics, along with links to additional information.

Lesson One:

Policies, Practices, and Procedures
Businesses usually have standard ways of doing things, but these normal policies, practices, or procedures can unintentionally prevent people with disabilities from obtaining their goods or services.  The ADA requires changes that make it possible to do business with people who have disabilities. 

Communicating with Customers Who Have Disabilities
It can be difficult to do business with people if you cannot communicate with them, but this does not mean a business should ignore people who have disabilities. The ADA requires businesses to take steps that make it possible to communicate with people who have disabilities. 

New Buildings, Additions, and Remodeling
When accessibility features are designed and built into a facility from the start, businesses can more easily serve people with disabilities along with everyone else. The ADA sets architectural standards to guarantee that new and renovated buildings will be accessible. 

Lesson Four

Removing Barriers in Buildings That Are Not Being Remodeled
Architectural features that are barriers for people who have disabilities are common in buildings built before 1992, and they can make it difficult to do business with people who have disabilities.  The ADA requires businesses to take simple and easy steps to reduce or eliminate barriers where possible. 

Providing Access When Removing Barriers Is Not Readily Achievable
Some barriers are too difficult or expensive to remove. In these situations, the ADA requires businesses to take other simple and easy steps to do business with people who have disabilities. 

Maintaining Accessibility 
Accessible features do not serve their purpose if they are blocked or broken. For this reason, the ADA makes businesses responsible for maintaining the accessibility of their facilities and equipment. 

Transporting Customers
Some businesses provide transportation services as a convenience for their customers.  Vans that pick up hotel guests at an airport and shuttles that transport people around a sports complex are two examples. Businesses that provide these services must provide similar service for people with disabilities. 

ADA Compliance Costs and Tax Incentives
Businesses may not charge people with disabilities extra to recover the costs of complying with the ADA. These costs are considered part of the business's overall cost of doing business.  However, special IRS tax incentives can help offset the costs of complying with the ADA. 

Enforcement of the ADA
People with disabilities can turn to the Federal courts or to the U.S. Department of Justice to complain about a business that violates the ADA. 

Information Sources
There are many places to get additional information about the ADA. 

As noted earlier, this course provides guidance to help businesses understand and comply with the provisions of the ADA that apply to buildings and customer service.  It does not cover the provisions that apply to employment.  For information about those requirements, see the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's website.

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