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Employing People with Disabilities 101

By Edited Feb 10, 2014 0 0

People with Disabilities are protected by Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) from discrimination in the workplace. Employers are mandated to give just consideration in the hiring, retention, and promotion of people with disabilities.

Disabled individuals who suffer discrimination in the process of application may file a formal lawsuit against the company.

Who is a qualified ADA worker

The ADA defines disability as a physical or mental illness that hinders the person from exercising normal day-to-day function. Examples of these are: seeing, hearing, talking, and walking. The court points to the effect of the impairment in exercising the full capability of the person.

A disabled worker is assessed as qualified if he or she can fulfill the job responsibility with or without assistance.

Criteria for assessing the worker are:

1. The worker has reasonable impairment affecting major life function.

2. The worker has previous medical record of impairment. (If the applicant has long term impairment, you cannot simply reject him or her.)

3. The worker appears to have a disability, in which other people perceive and treat him or her as such. (If the worker looks like a disabled, you still have to accommodate him or her in the hiring process.)

4. The impairment is or is perceived as permanent.

Fractured or broken bones due to accident as well as pregnancy are categorized as temporary impairment. Other federal and state laws provide protection, financial assistance, and employment rights for these.

The employer is mandated by law to carefully assess the applicant and offer employment contract should the necessary qualifications are met. Equipment, aid, or technology is available from government agencies to assist the employee with disability. The employer is also encouraged to provide necessary accommodation.

TDD telephone equipment and distraction-free office space may be provided for people with hearing difficulties and attention deficit disorder.

How to negotiate an accommodation

1. Inform your prospective employer about your impairment.

2. Maintain an open communication environment wherein you can discuss your limitations as well as capabilities in functioning as an employee.

3. Suggest aid, tool, or equipment that can help you fulfill your daily work duties.

4. Listen or consider to the alternative methods that the employer may provide for your accommodation.

5. Meet halfway or agree to the terms of employment.

6. Assert a written agreement on the terms of accommodation.

The "flexible interactive process" mandated by law will allow a reasonable dialogue between the disabled employee and the employer. This aims to seek ways on overcoming the disability and maximizing the capability that the disabled employee can contribute in the workforce.

If you are suffering from repetitive discrimination from companies who would not employ people with disability, consult with an ADA Disability attorney in Los Angeles and learn more on how you can assert your rights.


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