Important ADA Activists

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act provides that no individuals with disabilities “. . .shall be excluded from participation in programs or activities receiving federal financial assistance.

Ed Roberts, in full Edward Verne Roberts, (1939-1995), American disability rights activist who is considered the founder of the independent-living movement. He was the first wheelchair user to attend the University of California, Berkeley. He was a pioneering leader of the disability rights movement.  Ed Roberts is responsible for opening the nation’s first center for independent living.  It started with a staff of just two people. “We know that even the most severely disabled folks can live in the community, and it’s up to us – those of us who are lucky enough to be out and who feel the power of the process. Because every time we reach out to help someone else we empower them for ourselves,” he said.

Judith “Judy” Heumann (1947-2023) was an internationally recognized disability rights activist, widely regarded as “the mother” of the Disability Rights Movement. She was a leader in the historic Section 504 Sit-In of 1977 and instrumental in the development and implementation of other disability rights legislation.

The Five Core Independent Living Services

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