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What Counts As Disability Discrimination At Work?

Discrimination comes in many forms and happens in many different settings, and a workplace is not an exception.

When a particular individual is treated less favorably, put at a disadvantage, or prevented from accessing anything in the workplace because they do not meet a specific standard or a status quo, that is where discrimination happens.

What Counts As Disability Discrimination At Work?

Discrimination is based on many different characteristics that a person has—their age, gender, sexual orientation, weight, race, ethnicity, religion, status as a parent, but the most common among the given examples is disability discrimination.

Disability is not just physically-related, but it also covers one’s mental, emotional, and psychological well-being, which many often fail to recognize or include as an impediment.

Disability Discrimination in California

California is not the only state where disability discriminations occur because it is an ongoing pressing problem that happens worldwide even until this day.

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Many people experience such prejudice, mainly when they cannot perform tasks that many have deemed ordinary individuals could do, and that is where laws protect them.

The Disabled Persons Act, The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), Rehabilitation Act, and Unruh Civil Rights Act all have statutes that outline how every employer must provide for those with disabilities in the workplace.

You have the right to know the rights and benefits you are entitled to as a person with a disability, especially if you are experiencing disability discrimination at your workplace.

Determining if an organization or employer’s actions is daunting, especially when you are uncertain if you were indeed discriminated against.

The Law Office of Omid Nosrati suggests getting experienced discrimination lawyers to know if your employer’s actions are considered one of the many different types of disability discrimination. Should you choose to file a claim against them because of your or even a potential disability that you may have?

Types of Disability Discrimination

You will be secured and included in the protected class if you have a condition that the state of California law recognizes as a disability. It is your right as an individual to have equal and fair treatment not only from your employers but also from your colleagues, regardless of the disability you have.

There is no excuse of any kind for an employer to treat you or anyone less favorably because of a disability, one’s family history of disability, or just a mere belief that one has a disability because it is against the laws of California state.

If such prejudice occurs when you are applying for work or at your current workplace, they can be sued and held liable for all the damages done to you.

There are many examples of disability discrimination at work that you may not be familiar with, but these are the common ones that occur:

  • Suppose you are a disabled job applicant applying for a job and your potential employer refuses to hire you for your condition. In that case, the ADA strictly prohibits such discrimination for the said applicants,
  • Treating you, a qualified applicant or employee, unlawfully or unfairly, than others because of your disability,
  • Being made fun of by your employer or colleagues for your disability during job interviews or at the workplace,
  • Refusing to provide reasonable accommodation to a disabled applicant or employee,
  • Asking untoward questions about the nature or severity of one’s disability, including requesting or demanding medical records or non-routine medical or psychological examinations,
  • Terminating an applicant’s employment after suddenly becoming disabled after accepting a job offer or breaking an employment agreement upon discovering a disability,
  • Terminating an employee for taking emergency disability-related medical leaves, or sick days,
  • Retaliating or hostile treatment against a person filing for a claim regarding unlawful disability discrimination or requesting reasonable accommodation for any disability,
  • Failing to consider or exhaust all possible alternative employments for persons with disabilities during the application process,
  • Rescinding job offers due to applicant’s disability, and
  • Giving negative references due to the applicant’s or employee’s disability.

Should a disabled individual cannot perform the duties, tasks, or essential job functions required for the job position, the employer does not necessarily need to hire the said person.

The same is true should another, more qualified applicant not having any disability apply for a work position.

An employer also may not be required to provide accommodation should it cause “undue hardship” on the employer or organization.

However, this “undue hardship” defense has many factors that a court must consider if the opposing party was correct in denying the accommodation an applicant or employee is requesting.

It is only considered a form of discrimination if an employer suddenly takes adverse employment action against an applicant or employee should their disability play a significant role in taking such a step.

Don’t let anyone guilt you into getting the maximum compensation you deserve because being disabled does not warrant anyone to disrespect and discriminate against you for the condition you have no control of, whether it is at your workplace or not.


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