According to the American Disabilities Act an individual is considered to have a disability if he or she has a “physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.” Public individuals are required by the American Disabilities Act to provide services, programs and activities to address the needs of qualified individuals with disabilities. They are also required to avoid discrimination due to disability unless they can clearly show that any disability would vitally affect the nature of the service.

Doctors’ offices, pharmacies, hotels, restaurants, stores, libraries, private schools, parks and are all affected by the American Disabilities Act. These public units are prohibited from implementing policies that would screen out individuals with disabilities unless, as I previously mentioned, doing so is necessary to provide the services.

Employment discrimination refers to procedures related to the application that affect, recruitment, advertising, benefits, hiring, terminating, promoting, compensating, training strategies and other terms, conditions and benefits of employment. The American Disabilities Act makes the claim that any of these discriminatory acts are prohibited against qualified individuals with disabilities, including applicants. Being qualified means that an individual has the experience, skills, education or other requirements necessary for the job, and he or she is able to complete the essential functions of the job with or without reasonable accommodation.

The American Disabilities Act absolutely prohibits potential employers from asking a job applicant to take a medical exam before offering them a job. However, an employer may ask whether the applicant would be able to complete the essential functions of the job and how he or she would perform them.

If an employer chooses not to hire an applicant due to a disability being revealed they have the obligation of showing that no accommodation was available that would have allowed the applicant to perform the job duties without any hardship. Some examples of possible accommodations include: modifying a work schedule, acquiring equipment, providing an interpreter or assigning an employee to a vacant position.

If you are experiencing discrimination in the workplace, contact an experienced labor attorney today! Inform yourself of your rights under the American Disabilities Act!

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