There are many laws statewide and nationally pertaining to accessibility, consumer protection, and equality for individuals with disabilities. Listed below are some important laws and agencies geared at the protection and advancement of individuals with disabilities in the state of Maryland.
Maryland Procurement Laws
Maryland Information Technology Nonvisual Access (MD IT NVA)
With a new trend in technology aimed at streamlining information and making content available to all users, Maryland has spearheaded efforts with a new law charged with making all state websites accessible. (COMAR 17.06.02) requires that Maryland state government agencies provide information technology (IT) that is nonvisually accessible. IT includes web sites, which are a primary means for the public to gain information about and access to services from the state.
Click here for more information on MD Information Technology Nonvisual Access
Section 508, an amendment to the Workforce Rehabilitation Act of 1973, requires that all electronic information developed or purchased by the federal government be made accessible to people with disabilities.
Click here for more information on Section 508
Wheelchair Lemon Law
On April 12, 1994 Governor William Donald Schaefer signed the Motorized Wheelchair Warranty Enforcement Act into law. This act defines a lemon as "a motorized wheelchair or scooter with a "substantial" defect, which the manufacturer or its authorized dealer has unsuccessfully attempted to repair at least four times, or which has been out-of-service because of "substantial" defects for a total of thirty calendar days within one year after first delivery to the consumer. The thirty days DO NOT have to be consecutive." [Tapping Technology, p 2. (Maryland TAP newsletter)]. Specific provisions of the bill include, but are not limited to: certain express warranties; duration of certain warranties; prohibiting resale of returned non-conforming wheelchairs without full disclosure; repair, return and replacement of wheelchair; procedures for return of certain non-conforming wheelchairs; any waiver of consumer rights is void under this Act; and authorization of consumer action for damages, fees, costs and other equitable relief.
Click here to visit the visit the Maryland General Assembly website and view the Wheelchair Lemon Law
Maryland Anti-Discrimination Law:
COMAR Article 49-B, a Maryland anti-discrimination law enforced by the Commission on Human Relations, prohibits discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations, State services, institutional health care, and the conduct of business by Licensees of the Department of Licensing and Regulation. It protects people with disabilities, among other groups. It requires that employers of 15 or more workers provide reasonable accommodations for workers with disabilities, and mandates that public accommodations take reasonable steps to make their facilities accessible.
Click here to view more information on the Maryland Anti-Discrimination Law.
The Maryland Commission on Human Relations
Maryland Commission on Human Relations
The Maryland Disability Law Center (MDLC) is a private, non-profit organization staffed by attorneys and paralegals. MDLC is the Protection and Advocacy organization for Maryland. The mission of the MDLC is to ensure that people with disabilities are afforded the full rights and entitlements accorded them by state and federal law.
For more information on the services and advocacy that MDLC provides, contact:
MDLC Assistive Technology Unit
Maryland Disability Law Center
1800 N. Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21201
Maryland Disability Law Center
The Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law on July 26 1990. This wide-ranging legistlation was geared at making all of American Society more accessible to individuals with disabilities.
For more information on the ADA, visit the ADA homepage at Americans with Disabilities Act
Or call the toll-free ADA hotline at 800-514-0301 (voice) 800-514-0383 (TDD).
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