The ADA and the 11th Amendment

Thu Jan 20 11:05:38 PST 2000

> Thanks for this post, I was quite distressed by the States Are
> Kings ruling of last week. I have a question though:
> On Wed, 19 Jan 2000 JKSCHW at wrote:
> > Next in line: the Americans with Disabilities Act or ADA.
> > Like age, disability gets low scrutiny. If I were a lawyer
> > for a state employer who was sued for disability
> > discrimination, I would certainly argue that Kimel means
> > that the state could not be sued in federal court. This
> > would also apply to public accommodatiions, I would think:
> > states cannot be required by Congress, a state's attorney
> > will argue, to accommodate disabilities. that would be
> > unconstitutional under Kimel.
> Why would this apply to public accomodations? That is
> definitely nonobvious to this nonlawyer.

Well, if it's a public accommodation provided by the state--such as a courthouse or a jail--how could you sue to enforce the ADA requirement that public accommodations have to accommodate PwD? The state would be immune from suit under the 11th amendment. I hasten to say that no court has held this, as far as I know. Yet. But you wait.


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