Disabilities through the years

  • First school for the deaf in the world.

    First school for the deaf in the world.
    Samuel Heinicke establishes first oral school for the deaf in the world in Germany. *Following the opening of the school in Germany there were schools opened for the deaf in France and England. Paris, France offered a school for free
  • Mental Illnesses

    Paris, France unshackles people with mental illnesses
  • Connecticuit Asylum for the Education and Instruction of Deaf and Dumb Persons

    Connecticuit Asylum for the Education and Instruction of Deaf and Dumb Persons
    1817- Connecticut Asylum for the Education and Instruction of Deaf and Dumb Persons, the first permanent school for the deaf in America, opened in Hartford on April 15. *This is the first school for disabled children anywhere in the Western Hemisphere.
  • Louis Braille

    Louis Braille
    Louis Braille invents the raised point alphabet that has come to be known as Braille.
  • Perkins Institution

    Perkins Institution
    The Perkins Institution, founded by Samuel Gridley Howe in Boston, Massachusetts, was the first residential institution for people with mental retardation. Over the next century, hundreds of thousands of developmentally disabled children and adults were institutionalized, many for the rest of their live
  • Eugen Bleuler

    Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler introduces the term autism.
  • The Commonwealth of Virginia

    The Commonwealth of Virginia passed a state law that allowed for sterilization (without consent) of individuals found to be “feebleminded, insane, depressed, mentally handicapped, epileptic and other.” Alcoholics, criminals and drug addicts were also sterilized.
  • Buck V. Supreme Court

    Buck V. Supreme Court
    The Buck v. Bell Supreme Court decision ruled that forced sterilization of people with disabilities was not a violation of their constitutional rights. This decision removed all restraints for eugenicists. By the 1970s, over 60,000 disabled people were sterilized without their consent.
  • Aktion T-4

    Aktion T-4
    World War II began. Hitler ordered widespread mercy killing of the sick and disabled. The Nazi euthanasia program (code name Aktion T-4) was instituted to eliminate “life unworthy of life.”
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    Natzi Euthanasia Program

    (1940-1944) In Nazi Germany 908 patients are transferred from Schoenbrunn, an institution for retarded and chronically ill patients, to the euthanasia "installation" at Eglfing-Haar to be gassed. A monument to the victims now stands in the courtyard at Schoenbrunn.
  • Causes for Autism in the 50's

    1950's Austrian-born American child psychologist Bruno Bettelheim states that lack of acceptance and parental love causes autism.
  • First Handicap Parking Stickers

    First Handicap Parking Stickers
    Handicap parking stickers were introduced in Washington, D.C.
  • IDEA

    The Education of All Handicapped Children Act (PL 94-142) required free, appropriate public education in the least restrictive setting. This Act was later renamed The Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
  • "Baby Doe"

    The parents of “Baby Doe” in Bloomington, Indiana were advised by their doctors to decline surgery to unblock their newborn’s esophagus because the baby had Down's syndrome. Although disability rights activists tried to intervene, “Baby Doe” starved to death before legal action was taken.
  • The Americans with Disabilities Act

    The Americans with Disabilities Act
    The Americans with Disabilities Act was signed by George W. Bush. The Act provided comprehensive civil rights protection for people with disabilities. Closely modeled after the Civil Rights Act and Section 504, the law was the most sweeping disability rights legislation in history. It mandated that local, state and federal governments and programs be accessible, that businesses with more than 15 employees make “reasonable accommodations” for disabled workers and that public accommodations such a
  • OAR

    *NIH now states that autism affects 1 in 250 children. *The Organization for Autism Research OAR is founded.
  • Autism Affects 1 in 50 US Children

    Scientists find genetic bases of autism spectrum disorders. CDC now estimates that autism affects 1 in 150 U.S. children. The Senate designates April as National Autism Awareness Month. Start of the class-action law suit on thousands of mercury-autism claims contend at the U.S. Federal Claims Court.