Respondents were asked to report on their awareness of the and to evaluate whether conditions had improved over the years 1994-1998 in public transportation, public facilities/theaters/stores, public attitude toward the disabled, and portrayals of disabled people in the media and advertising. Slightly more than half (54.3%) of the respondents reported knowing about a "law" regarding disabilities that was passed within the ten years before their interviews. Approximately that same number could identify it as the ADA. Those that did name the ADA were more likely to perceive positive changes and improvements over those who could not name it or were unaware of a law being passed. Yet, the respondents' level of life satisfaction did not vary with their awareness of the ADA. Their level of satisfaction and dissatisfaction varies regardless of their knowledge of the act. The author's findings support that the legislation is beneficial and that access to public facilities has an impact on life satisfaction. "However our findings do indicate that the implementation of the ADA is incomplete, especially educating consumers with disabilities about their consumer rights," the authors conclude.
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Carol Kaufman-Scarborough is a professor of Marketing in the School of Business at Rutgers University- Camden.
Dr. Kaufman-Scarborough is available for questions and interviews.
Stacey Menzel Baker is a professor in the Department of Management & Marketing at the University of Wyoming.
Dr. Menzel Baker is available for questions and interviews.