City of Gastonia's Americans with Disabilities Act Program
The City of Gastonia is committed to promoting the quality of opportunity for all citizens. The city takes pride in ensuring that people with disabilities are able to take part in and benefit from, the range of public programs, services, and activities offered by the City. The City continues to modify its facilities, programs, policies, or practices, as necessary, to ensure access is provided.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a civil rights law that was enacted on July 26, 1990. The ADA guarantees equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities in public accommodations, employment, transportation, State and local government services, and telecommunications. The purpose of the law is to ensure that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else. The ADA is divided into five titles (or sections) that relate to different areas of public life.
Americans with Disabilities Act Titles
Title I - Employment
Prohibits private employers, State and local governments, employment agencies, and labor unions from discriminating against qualified individuals with disabilities in job application procedures, hiring, firing, advancement, compensation, job training, and other terms, conditions, and privileges of employment. The ADA covers employers with 15 or more employees, including State and local governments. It also applies to employment agencies and to labor organizations.
Title II - Public Service
Prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities in all programs, activities, and services of public entities. It applies to all state and local governments, their departments and agencies, and any other instrumentalities or special purpose districts of state or local governments.
Title III - Public Accommodations
Prohibits private places of public accommodation from discriminating against individuals with disabilities. Examples of public accommodations include privately-owned, leased, or operated facilities like hotels, restaurants, retail merchants, doctor’s offices, golf courses, private schools, daycare centers, health clubs, sports stadiums, movie theaters, and so on. This title sets the minimum standards for accessibility for alterations and new construction of facilities. It also requires public accommodations to remove barriers in existing buildings where it is easy to do so without much difficulty or expense. This title directs businesses to make "reasonable modifications" to their usual ways of doing things when serving people with disabilities. It also requires that they take the steps necessary to communicate effectively with customers with vision, hearing, and speech disabilities. This title is regulated and enforced by the U.S. Department of Justice.
Title IV - Telecommunication
Requires telephone and Internet companies to provide a nationwide system of interstate and intrastate telecommunications relay services that allows individuals with hearing and speech disabilities to communicate over the telephone. This title also requires closed captioning of federally funded public service announcements. This title is regulated by the Federal Communication Commission.
Title V - Miscellaneous
This title contains a variety of provisions relating to the ADA as a whole, including its relationship to other laws, state immunity, its impact on insurance providers and benefits, the prohibition against retaliation and coercion, illegal use of drugs, and attorney’s fees. This title also provides a list of certain conditions that are not to be considered disabilities.
Grievance Procedure Under Title II, The Americans with Disabilities Act
Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires that public entities adopt and publish grievance procedures to assure the prompt and equitable resolution of complaints. The purpose of this ADA grievance procedure is to resolve as promptly as possible any problems, complaints, or conflicts related to the City’s ADA compliance without the need for the complainant to resort to other remedies available under the law.
Grievance Procedure Summary
If a grievant believes he or she has been discriminated against on the basis of a disability, the grievant should submit the complaint form containing information about the alleged discrimination, including the name, address, and phone number of the grievant and location, date and description of the problem.
The complaint should be submitted as soon as possible but no later than 60 days after the alleged violation to:
Americans with Disabilities Act Contacts
Judy Smith, City of Gastonia ADA Coordinator
Cherie Jzar, Coordinator of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
For more information about The City of Gastonia’s Americans with Disabilities Act Program, please call: 704-866-6786
For accommodations at City Council meetings, please contact the Clerk's Office
181 S. South Street, Gastonia, NC 28052