Legislation sponsored by state Rep. Carol Sente (D-Vernon Hills) would fast track the timeframe for public buildings in Illinois to meet or exceed federal accessibility standards established in 2012. Illinois’ accessibility standards have not been changed since 1997.
“At one time, Illinois was a leader in accessibility standards for persons with disabilities,” Sente said. “However, the Environmental Barriers Act has not been updated for over a decade, and we have fallen behind. I am proposing that we set a clear timetable for these updates with the goal of comparing our guidelines with the most recent version of the Americans with Disabilities Act and determining where Illinois wishes to mirror the federal law and where we wish to be more stringent.”
House Bill 1462 would require the Capital Development Board to update the Illinois Environmental Barriers Act using the federal Americans with Disabilities architectural guidelines as a model. The Americans with Disabilities Act was originally signed into law in 1990 and has since been updated on the federal level as recently as 2010.
“Ensuring that our public buildings are accessible to all members of our community is critically important,” Sente said. “We have an obligation to give the most vulnerable members of our community every opportunity to be independent and self-sufficient.”
For more information, please contact Sente’s full time constituent service office at (847) 478-9909, or e-mail RepSente@gmail.com.
— Submitted by the office of Rep. Sente