WASHINGTON, D.C.—Senator John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV, Chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, issued the following statement after the House approved the Senate version of the Equal Access to 21st Century Communications Act (S. 3304). The legislation will update existing disabilities law to reflect accessibility to new and emerging technologies. The bill will now be sent to President Obama to be signed into law.
Chairman Rockefeller’s statement follows:
“I have worked my entire career to bring the power and the promise of innovative communications technology to every corner of my state. I have seen the opportunity it creates for our communities, for changing education, improving healthcare, and strengthening local businesses. We have a responsibility to make sure that kind of opportunity is available to everyone. That is why I am extremely pleased that the House last night passed the Senate version of the Equal Access to 21st Century Communications Act. In our fast paced and ever-evolving technological landscape, this landmark civil rights bill will help lead to greater communications accessibility and economic opportunity for Americans with disabilities everywhere.”
Earlier this year, the Commerce Committee, under Chairman Rockefeller’s leadership, favorably reported S. 3304 out of committee. This came on the heels of a Communications Subcommittee hearing titled Innovation and Inclusion: The Americans with Disabilities Act at 20, which examined how well communications accessibility standards have kept pace with technological innovations since the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Additional information on the Equal Access to 21st Century Communications Act can be found here.