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The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was passed July 26, 1990, as Public Law 101-336 and became effective on January 26, 1992 (amended in 2008). The ADA is landmark federal legislation that provides civil rights protections to individuals with disabilities.

An individual with a disability and/or medical/mental health condition is defined by the ADA as a person who:

  • Has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of such person's major life activities
  • Has a record of such an impairment
  • Is regarded as having such an impairment

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits discrimination based on sex in education programs or activities including academic, educational, extracurricular, athletic, and other programs or activities of schools. This prohibition includes discrimination against pregnant and parenting students. Students may request reasonable accommodations necessary due to the student's pregnancy.

The University Religious Observances Act (110 ILCS 110) states that a public institution of higher education shall adopt a policy which reasonably accommodates the religious observance of individual students in regard to admissions, class attendance, and the scheduling of examinations and work requirements.

Illinois Information Technology Accessibility Act (IITAA) requires Illinois agencies and universities to ensure that their web sites, information systems, and information technologies are accessible to people with disabilities.