Legislation: Preparing for the ATP Exam

Legislation: Preparing for the ATP Exam
Michelle Lange, OTR, ABDA, ATP/SMS
November 17, 2016
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Learning Objectives

  • After this course, participants will be able to describe the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and how this impacts people with disabilities.
  • After this course, participants will be able to describe the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and how this impacts people with disabilities.
  • After this course, participants will be able to describe the Technology Related Assistance for Individuals with Disabilities Act (Tech Act) and how this impacts people with disabilities.

Michelle: Thanks for joining us for this final webinar in our series for the ATP examination. We are going to be addressing legislation today. In today's webinar, we will be discussing legislation and funding. While it is hard to make this topic terribly exciting, it is important that we are aware of this information as some is on the ATP examination. It helps to be generally aware of legislation so that we know of the resources and funding options available

Assistive Technology Professional (ATP) Certification

The ATP certification is offered through RESNA, and it is designed to demonstrate a basic level of competence in assistive technology. This series of courses includes information to help prepare you for this exam. Over 4,000 people hold that credential. The ATP certification requires certain prerequisites, and those can be found on the RESNA website. For occupational therapy practitioners, the RESNA requirement is 1,000 hours of work experience over a six-year period of time.

Legislation

This is the legislation that we will be addressing in this course (see Figure 1).

Figure 1. Different legislation related to assistive technology.

We are going review the Rehabilitation Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Assistive Technology Act (Tech Act), and the Workforce Investment Act.

Rehabilitation Act

The Rehabilitation Act is our oldest pertinent legislation. This was passed back in 1973. The purpose of the Rehabilitation Act was to prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability, specifically in programs that were run by federal agencies. This included programs that received any federal financial assistance, in federal employment, and in the employment practices of federal contractors. Like most legislation, there are a number of pages of information, but the core of this is prohibiting discrimination based on disability, but was limited to anything was connected to federal agencies.

The Rehabilitation Act includes a number of titles as shown in Figure 2.

Figure 2. Titles under the Rehabilitation Act.

These seven areas of the act all addressed specific features of this legislation. If you are a federal agency, you had to be quite aware of how you conducted your business. We are going to look at two specific titles.

Title V- Rights and Advocacy

This had to do with a number of specific parameters:

  • Sec 501. Employment of Individuals with Disabilities
  • Sec 502. Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board
  • Sec 503. Employment Under Federal Contracts
  • Sec 504. Nondiscrimination Under Federal Grants and Programs
  • Sec 508. Electronic and Information Technology
  • Sec 509. Protection and Advocacy of Individual Rights

Now, remember, this is back in 1973. We did not have the internet or computers yet, but we were already addressing how people with disabilities could access electronic and information technologies. This was landmark legislation. None of this had truly been addressed before. This was the first time we were looking at not only not discriminating against someone based on a disability, but employment of people with disabilities and addressing architectural and transportation issues. Certainly these are still barriers today, but even more so back in 1973.

Title VI- Employment Opportunities for Individuals with Disabilities

  • Sec 601. Projects with Industry
  • Sec 602. Supported Employment

Title VI specifically had to do with employment opportunities for individual with disabilities, and included some specific projects with industry and supported employment. There were quite the rallies at the time


michelle lange

Michelle Lange, OTR, ABDA, ATP/SMS

Michelle is an occupational therapist with 25 years of experience and former Clinical Director of The Assistive Technology Clinics of The Children’s Hospital of Denver. She is a well-respected lecturer, both nationally and internationally and has authored 7 book chapters and over 175 articles. She is the editor of Fundamentals in Assistive Technology, 4th ed. Michelle is on the teaching faculty of RESNA and the University of Pittsburgh. She is on the RERC on Wheeled Mobility Advisory Board. Michelle is a credentialed ATP, credentialed SMS and is a Senior Disability Analyst of the ABDA.



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