FAIR TREATMENT OF DISABLED WORKERS
Nashana Riley was a 29-year-old personnel sergeant in the Army when she contracted a severe case of encephalitis and spinal meningitis that paralyzed her from the neck down. She re-learned many of the skills and tasks that we take for granted, but it was ultimately decided that she could not perform as a soldier and was given a medical discharge. She later earned her bachelor’s degree and went on to earn a master’s degree summa cum laude while she and her husband were raising two young children. She then worked as a personnel assistant for the United States Department of Defense and won an award for her outstanding achievements.
If you are qualified to work and believe that you have been denied job opportunities because of your disability, discrimination lawyers in New York City can advise you as to what your rights are under the law.
The Americans with Disabilities Act
Under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), it is against the law to make a discriminatory employment decision with respect to qualified person who has a disability. Job discrimination is illegal, regardless of whether the employer is a:
- Private company
- State or local government
- Employment agency
- Labor organization
Who is protected by this law?
If you have a physical or mental deficit that prevents you from or substantially restricts your ability to hear, see, speak, walk, breathe, take care of yourself, perform manual jobs, learn or work, you are protected from job discrimination— as long as you have the necessary education, experience, skills or licenses the employer requires and you are able to perform the essential duties of the job, either by yourself or with a reasonable accommodation or assistance.
Assisted working: using a reasonable accommodation
Qualified, disabled employees will be able to apply for a job or perform the necessary tasks for a job, if given assistance (an accommodation), which can take the form of:
- Modified equipment
- Reorganization of job tasks
- Customized work schedules
- Assignment to a different position when there is a vacancy
- Adapting or simplifying exams, training information or guidelines
- Assistance with reading and language
- Assuring workplace access for people with disabilities
Unless an employer can demonstrate that the accommodation would entail significant expense or difficulty, a qualified disabled applicant or employee with a disability must be given a reasonable accommodation. New York disability discrimination attorney can help you get the accommodation you need. Thus, a person who is intellectually disabled could be accommodated by a manager who:
- Delivers instructions more slowly
- Grants extra time to complete training
- Divides tasks into the steps necessary to accomplish the task
- Provides directions using pictures or colors
If you are a qualified disabled job applicant or employee and you believe that you have been discriminated against in hiring, training, job assignments, pay benefits, layoffs and leaves or promotions, act promptly and consult the experienced attorneys at the Akin Law Group.