Know your accessibility acronyms

ABA: Architectural Barriers Act

  • Law enacted by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1968
  • One of the first efforts to ensure that certain federally funded buildings and facilities are designed and constructed to be accessible to people with disabilities
  • Requires that facilities designed, built, altered or leased with funds supplied by the United States Federal Government be accessible to the public
  • Facilities that predate the law generally are not covered, but alterations or leases undertaken after the law took effect can trigger coverage

ABAAS: Architectural Barriers Act Accessibility Standards

  • Standards issued under the Architectural Barriers Act (ABA) apply to facilities designed, built, altered, or leased with certain federal funds
  • ABA standards now combined with ADA under the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design

ADA: Americans with Disabilities Act

  • Law that was enacted by U.S. Congress in 1990
  • Prohibits disability discrimination by all public entities at the local and state level
  • Access includes physical access to buildings

ADAAG: ADA Accessibility Guidelines

  • Design guidelines developed by the Access Board
  • Used by the Department of Justice and the Department of Transportation in setting enforceable standards that the public must follow
  • Revised in 2010, effective March 2012

FHA: Fair Housing Act

  • Adopted in 1968, amended in 1988
  • Prohibits discrimination in the sale and rental of housing, and in mortgage lending
  • Includes accessibility requirements which impact most multi-family housing units

IBC: International Building Code

  • Most widely adopted building code in the United States
  • Developed by the International Code Council, a membership association dedicated to building safety and fire prevention
  • Typically the minimum requirement for construction in local, state or federal legislation

ICC ANSI A117.1: Accessible and Usable Buildings and Facilities

  • Standard referenced by the International Building Code for doors on an accessible route

UFAS: Uniform Federal Accessibility Standards

  • Uniform standards for the design, construction and alteration of buildings so physically handicapped persons have ready access to and use of them
  • Developed and maintained by an Access Board and serve as the basis for the standards used to enforce the law
  • Federal agencies are responsible for ensuring compliance with UFAS when funding the design, construction, alteration or leasing of facilities
  • Many federal facilities now use the 2010 ADA instead of UFAS

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