The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on disability. It affords similar protections against discrimination to Americans with disabilities as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which made discrimination based on race, sex, national origin, other characteristics illegal. In addition, unlike the Civil Rights Act, the ADA requires covered employers to provide reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities, imposes accessibility requirements on public accommodations. In 1986, the National Council on Disability had recommended enactment of an Americans with Disabilities Act and drafted the first version of the bill, introduced in the House and Senate in 1988; the final version of the bill was signed into law on July 1990, by President George H. W. Bush, it was amended in 2008 and signed by President George W. Bush with changes effective as of January 1, 2009. ADA disabilities include both physical medical conditions. A condition does not need to be permanent to be a disability.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission regulations provide a list of conditions that should be concluded to be disabilities: deafness, blindness, an intellectual disability or missing limbs or mobility impairments requiring the use of a wheelchair, cancer, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, Human Immunodeficiency Virus infection, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, schizophrenia. Other mental or physical health conditions may be disabilities, depending on what the individual's symptoms would be in the absence of "mitigating measures", during an "active episode" of the condition. Certain specific conditions that are considered anti-social, or tend to result in illegal activity, such as kleptomania, exhibitionism, etc. are excluded under the definition of "disability" in order to prevent abuse of the statute's purpose. Additionally, other specific conditions, such as gender identity disorders, are excluded under the definition of "disability".
See US labor law and 42 U. S. C. §§ 12111–12117. The ADA states that a "covered entity" shall not discriminate against "a qualified individual with a disability"; this applies to job application procedures, hiring and discharge of employees, job training, other terms and privileges of employment. "Covered entities" include employers with 15 or more employees, as well as employment agencies, labor organizations, joint labor-management committees. There are strict limitations on when a covered entity can ask job applicants or employees disability-related questions or require them to undergo medical examination, all medical information must be kept confidential. Prohibited discrimination may include, among other things, firing or refusing to hire someone based on a real or perceived disability and harassment based on a disability. Covered entities are required to provide reasonable accommodations to job applicants and employees with disabilities. A reasonable accommodation is a change in the way things are done that the person needs because of a disability, can include, among other things, special equipment that allows the person to perform the job, scheduling changes, changes to the way work assignments are chosen or communicated.
An employer is not required to provide an accommodation that would involve undue hardship, the individual who receives the accommodation must still perform the essential functions of the job and meet the normal performance requirements. An employee or applicant who engages in the illegal use of drugs is not considered qualified when a covered entity takes adverse action based on such use. There are many ways to discriminate against people based on disabilities, including psychological ones. Anyone known to have a history of mental disorders can be considered disabled. Employers with more than 15 employees must take care to treat all employees and with any accommodations needed; when an employee is doing a job exceptionally well, she or he is not no longer disabled. Part of Title I was found unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court as it pertains to states in the case of Board of Trustees of the University of Alabama v. Garrett as violating the sovereign immunity rights of the several states as specified by the Eleventh Amendment to the United States Constitution.
The Court determined. State employees can, file complaints at the Department of Justice or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, who can sue on their behalf. Title II prohibits disability discrimination by all public entities at the local level, e.g. school district, city, or county, at state level. Public entities must comply with Title II regulations by the U. S. Department of Justice; these regulations cover access to all services offered by the entity. Access includes physical access described in the ADA Standards for Accessible Design and programmatic access that might be obstructed by discriminatory policies or procedures of the entity. Title II applies to public transportation provided by public entities through regulations by the U. S. Department of Transportation, it includes the National Railroad Passenger Corporation, along with all other commuter au