the advocacy monitor

Independent Living News & Policy from the National Council on Independent Living

Senator Tammy Duckworth and 42 Other Senators Pledge to Protect the ADA!

Yesterday 43 Senators sent a letter written by Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) to Senate Majority Leader McConnell (R-KY) pledging to protect the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) from notification bills like the ADA Education and Reform Act (H.R. 620). This letter comes on the heels of House passage of H.R. 620 and some GOP Senators expressing support for seeing a similar bill in the Senate. This group of 43 Senators is large enough to block any similar measure in the Senate.

Thank you to our NCIL members across the country who have contacted their Members of Congress repeatedly and urged them protect the ADA! The most recent efforts by disability advocates to ensure that our Senators know the dangers of bills like H.R. 620 have all but guaranteed that this Senate will not have the votes to gut the ADA.

This letter is a huge win in the fight to protect the ADA. We are incredibly grateful to Senator Duckworth for her leadership on this issue, and for authoring a letter that so clearly states how dangerous and misguided bills like H.R. 620 are – and how important the ADA is. However, if history has taught us anything, we know the efforts to roll back our rights are not over. Bills like this have been introduced for years, and the business community is unlikely to stop trying to chip away at the ADA. We must continue to follow federal and state threats to our rights, and we will keep you updated on this issue and any advocacy needs that arise. NCIL, other disability rights organizations, and disabled folks around the country have long been prepared to fight efforts to undermine the ADA; we now have 43 Senators who have pledged to fight alongside us. 

Full list of Senators who signed the letter:

  • Chuck Schumer (D-NY)
  • Bob Casey (D-PA)
  • Patty Murray (D-WA)
  • Maggie Hassan (D-NH)
  • Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
  • Chris Van Hollen (D-MD)
  • Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)
  • Michael Bennet (D-CO)
  • Richard Blumenthal (D-CT)
  • Cory Booker (D-NJ)
  • Sherrod Brown (D-OH)
  • Maria Cantwell (D-WA)
  • Ben Cardin (D-MD)
  • Tom Carper (D-DE)
  • Chris Coons (D-DE)
  • Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV)
  • Dick Durbin (D-IL)
  • Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)
  • Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
  • Kamala Harris (D-CA)
  • Martin Heinrich (D-NM)
  • Mazie Hirono (D-HI)
  • Tim Kaine (D-VA)
  • Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
  • Patrick Leahy (D-VT)
  • Edward Markey (D-MA)
  • Claire McCaskill (D-MO)
  • Jeff Merkley (D-OR)
  • Bob Menendez (D-NJ)
  • Chris Murphy (D-CT)
  • Gary Peters (D-MI)
  • Jack Reed (D-RI)
  • Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
  • Brian Schatz (D-HI)
  • Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH)
  • Tina Smith (D-MN)
  • Debbie Stabenow (D-MI)
  • Jon Tester (D-MT)
  • Tom Udall (D-NM)
  • Mark Warner (D-VA)
  • Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI)
  • Ron Wyden (D-OR)