The Issue: Disability Requirements

APSP advocates access!

With a program of advocacy and education, APSP is working to help its members and their communities implement the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the wide-ranging civil rights law which promotes access and prohibits discrimination based on disability.

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  • After years of development in which the pool and spa industry took part, a second round of regulations, the ADA Standards for Accessible Design was adopted in 2010. It calls for accessible means of entry for individuals with disabilities in pools and spas constructed or renovated on or after March 15, 2012, in school districts, municipalities, cities, counties, commercial facilities, and hotels. Those not complying by January 31, 2013 may be subject to enforcement action by the Department of Justice (DOJ) or state authorities, and civil action by persons denied access.
  • Unlike the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act (VGBA), which required public pools to close if they were not in compliance, the ADA recognizes that the retrofitting of existing facilities is not always practical or affordable.Therefore, existing pools and spas are excused if compliance is not readily achievable as of the effective date. The DOJ explains that determining if compliance is readily achievable includes an analysis of cost, owner resources, and feasibility.The DOJ also cautions that facilities must continue to endeavor to comply, and what is not achievable in 2013 maybe considered readily achievable in 2014. Facilities that do not comply by the effective date are advised to have in place a written “barrier removal” plan documenting their efforts.

The Issue: Disability