Federal Legislation

The Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 504, Subpart C (41.51a)

States: "No qualified handicapped person shall, on the basis of handicap, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity that receives or benefits from federal financial assistance."

Subpart E (84.41-84.47) applies to post secondary education programs and activities. A "qualified handicapped person" with regard to education is one "who meets the academic and technical standards requisite to admission or participation in the institution's programs and activities." These specific provisions prohibit discrimination on the basis of handicap in admissions and recruitment, treatment of students after admission, academic requirements, housing, financial, employment assistance for students, and nonacademic services such as physical education, counseling and placement services and social organizations.

The Americans with Disabilities Act

Signed into law by President George Bush on July 26, 1990, the ADA guarantees persons with disabilities access to employment, public accommodations, transportation, public services and telecommunications. The ADA affects all state and local governments, regardless of size. It also applies to a wide array of companies, organizations and agencies, both public and private. Entities are required to make "reasonable accommodation" to "qualified individuals with a disability" unless the accommodation would impose an "undue hardship" ("an action that is unduly costly, extensive, substantial, disruptive, or that will fundamentally alter the nature of the program").
Taken from SECTION 504, COMPLIANCE HANDBOOK and ADA COMPLIANCE GUIDE, Thompson Publishing Group.