PRINTER'S NO. 1504
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
SENATE RESOLUTION
No.
302
Session of
2020
INTRODUCED BY TARTAGLIONE, MUTH, FONTANA, DINNIMAN, BAKER,
KEARNEY, IOVINO, LEACH, COLLETT, BROOKS, BREWSTER,
BARTOLOTTA, BROWNE, J. WARD, MARTIN, PHILLIPS-HILL,
SANTARSIERO, KILLION AND MENSCH, FEBRUARY 4, 2020
REFERRED TO RULES AND EXECUTIVE NOMINATIONS, FEBRUARY 4, 2020
A RESOLUTION
Designating the month of March 2020 as "Disabilities Awareness
Month" in Pennsylvania.
WHEREAS, On October 27, 1955, the Pennsylvania General
Assembly passed the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, which
prohibited discrimination in the areas of employment, housing
and public accommodations on the basis of race, color, familial
status, religious creed, ancestry, handicap or disability, age,
sex and national origin; and
WHEREAS, On September 26, 1973, the Congress of the United
States passed the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which was the
precursor to the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act
of 1990, and prohibited the Federal Government, as an employer,
from discriminating against qualified individuals with
disabilities; and
WHEREAS, On July 26, 1990, President George H. W. Bush signed
into law the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA),
which served as the world's first comprehensive civil rights law
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for individuals with disabilities; and
WHEREAS, According to the United States Census Bureau, nearly
1 in 5 individuals, or approximately 56.7 million individuals,
in the United States have a disability; and
WHEREAS, In this Commonwealth, approximately 14.2%, or an
estimated 1.8 million residents, have a disability; and
WHEREAS, According to data obtained from the 2017 American
Community Survey, the prevalence of disability in this
Commonwealth by race was 11.3% among whites, 13.1% among those
of Hispanic or Latino origin, 16.2% among African Americans,
16.3% among individuals of other races and 16.3% among Native
Americans; and
WHEREAS, According to United States Census data, the economic
consequences of having a disability in America are compelling;
and
WHEREAS, Approximately 19.1% of working-age Americans with a
disability are employed as compared to 65.9% of working-age
nondisabled Americans; and
WHEREAS, This presents a quality-of-life issue, as in 2016,
the poverty rate of working-age individuals with disabilities in
this Commonwealth was estimated to be 28% as compared to 9.4%
for working-age individuals without a disability; and
WHEREAS, Although the act of fostering awareness about the
issue of our Commonwealth's disabled population is important,
the real objective lies in ensuring that Pennsylvanians with
disabilities are provided the dignity, respect and
accommodations that they deserve; and
WHEREAS, The purpose of this resolution is to recognize the
prevalence of the systemic inequities that exist within our
society pertaining to the treatment of our residents with
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disabilities as well as acknowledge the many invaluable efforts
that have been made throughout the history of our nation to
institute much-needed civil protections for all Americans;
therefore be it
RESOLVED, That the Senate designate the month of March 2020
as "Disabilities Awareness Month" in Pennsylvania; and be it
further
RESOLVED, That the Senate encourage all Pennsylvanians to
learn more about the many unique challenges confronting this
Commonwealth's residents who are disabled and assume the task of
fostering a greater degree of awareness and education regarding
this critically important subject.
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