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Americans With Disabilities Act Essay

1507 words - 6 pages

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is intended to bring an end to discrimination against individuals with disabilities in three distinct areas: employment, public services, and public accommodations. This law was enacted in 1990 and is enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Fitchburg State College stated it simply, "The ADA was established to strip away the barriers that have restricted people with disabilities from achieving their fullest potential in employment and in the community."Disabled individuals have been faced with struggling to live day to day in our society. Discrimination against the disabled person could be found in employment (employers just didn't want to be bothered), public services (buses were not equipped for wheelchairs; streets, pavements did not have ramps; buildings, buildings were accessible for wheelchairs) and public accommodations (restaurants, hotels, movie theaters). Throughout the years, society has created a more disabled-welcome atmosphere, employers began to hire more disabled individuals, pavements were repaved; restrooms were redesigned and buildings were enhanced for wheelchairs. A disabled person is someone who has a(1) "a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of an individual's major life activities";(2) "a record of such an impairment; or"(3) being (regarded by the employer) as having such an impairment" (Dinsmore & Shohl, 2001, p.108).The first area or Title I in the ADA prohibits discrimination in employment in areas such as, recruitment or job application procedures, promotions, advancement and training (p. 115). Dinsmore & Shohl (2001) explain that employers are subject to follow Title I of the ADA if they have "...15 or more employees on each working day during 20 or more calendar weeks in the current or preceding year..." (p. 106). An employer is expected to hire the best-qualified candidate as long as the disability is not used to disqualify the candidate.The ADA requires for the employer to provide "reasonable accommodations" for the employee to be able to accomplish the duties of the position. Some of the examples in statue include: making facilities physically accessible; job restructuring; part-time or modified work schedules; reassignments to a vacant job; or acquisition or modification of equipment or devices. A reasonable accommodation is not one that would burden the business with an undue hardship, but one that would make "existing facilities more accessible" (Dinshore & Shohl, 2001, p.112). The burden for requesting reasonable accommodations rests upon the employee's shoulders.Our receptionist at work is disabled. She was hired through a program called the priority placement program. All vacancies clear this program and when an individual in the program qualifies for the position, then they block any outside candidates. At first, her supervisor was a little worried about her ability for accomplishing the duties of...

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