Federal Agencies and Resources

Many federal agencies issue regulations, provide technical assistance and enforce different sections of the ADA. For example the Department of Justice is responsible for title II, which applies to state and local governments, and title III, which applies to businesses and non-profit organizations. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission handles all things related to the ADA and employment. Below is a list of the relevant federal agencies.

U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)

The DOJ issues, enforces and provides technical assistance on the ADA regulations governing public accommodations and state and local government services. Technical assistance is provided by telephone and by web-based material on title II and III issues such as service animals, polling places, accessible websites and emergency preparedness.

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)

The EEOC issues, enforces and provides technical assistance on the ADA Title I employment regulations. Technical assistance is provided by web-based material on many ADA subjects such as reasonable accommodation, pre-employment inquiries, performance standards and employee medical exams.

U.S. Access Board

The Access Board issues the document that is the basis of the ADA Standards for Accessible Design. It provides technical assistance on the Standards by telephone and develops guidelines to the Standards which include helpful illustrations and animations.

U.S. Department of Labor

Two agencies within the Department of Labor enforce portions of the ADA. The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has coordinating authority under the employment-related provisions of the ADA. The OFCCP also regulates Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act, which prohibits federal contractors and subcontractors from discriminating in employment against individuals with disabilities, and requires these employers to take affirmative action to recruit, hire, promote, and retain workers with disabilities.The Civil Rights Center is responsible for enforcing Title II of the ADA as it applies to the labor- and workforce-related practices of state and local governments and other public entities. The Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) provides publications and other technical assistance on the basic requirements of the ADA. It does not enforce any part of the law.

U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)

The DOT issues and enforces the ADA transportation regulations.  Most of the ADA provisions fall under the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). The FTA Office of Civil Rights is responsible for civil rights compliance and monitoring to ensure nondiscriminatory provision of public transit services.

Other divisions of DOT that have ADA obligations include:

  • Federal Highway Administration –ADA compliance in the public right-of-way (roadway travel lanes, medians, planting strips, sidewalks).
  • Federal Railroad Administration – Administers intercity and commuter rail compliance with ADA.
  • Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration – Administers ADA regulations requiring accessible, timely Over-the-Road Bus service for passengers with disabilities.

Federal Communications Commission (FCC)

The FCC enforces ADA regulations covering telecommunication services.

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

HUD enforces ADA title II housing complaints. HUD develops and enforces two “companion” housing laws. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Fair Housing Act.

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

FEMA supports citizens and first responders in preparing for, protecting against, responding to, recovering from, and mitigating all hazards.