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EEOC revising rules to conform to ADA Amendments Act

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WASHINGTON—The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission voted Wednesday to revise its regulations to conform to changes made by the ADA Amendments Act of 2008, which would make it easier for individuals seeking protection under the Americans with Disabilities Act to establish they have a disability.

President George Bush last September signed the ADA Amendments Act, which requires judges to interpret the ADA broadly when determining whether someone has been discriminated against because of a disability.

The rules changes approved by the commission in a 2-1 vote now must be reviewed by other agencies, including the Department of Transportation, the Justice Department and the Office of Management and Budget.

The proposed changes then will be returned to the EEOC for further review and released to the public for comment, said an EEOC spokeswoman, who could not provide a timetable.

EEOC Acting Chairman Stuart J. Ishimaru said in a statement, “In approving these proposed regulations, the EEOC today is taking a significant step toward returning the ADA to the broad and strong civil rights statute that Congress originally intended it to be.

“The proposed regulations will permit individuals with disabilities to participate to the fullest extent possible in the American workplace.”