New York discrimination lawyers know that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) protects individuals from workplace discrimination and harassment. Under this federal Act, an employer may not discriminate against a person with a physical or mental impairment who is qualified to perform a job with or without a reasonable accommodation. If a disabled individual applies for or has a job and needs a reasonable accommodation, the employer must provide it if doing so will not cause undue hardship to the business. The Act applies to companies with 15 or more employees. Similar New York state law applies to businesses with 4 or more employees.
According to the US Bureau of Labor and Statistics, in 2015:
The ADA makes it a bit harder for employers to perpetuate statistics like these. Under the ADA it is unlawful to discriminate against a qualified person with a disability in any area of employment including hiring, firing, promoting and compensation. The Act requires that employers make reasonable accommodations and imposes a broad range of obligations and restrictions designed to protect the equal rights of disabled individuals. The ADA also makes it unlawful to harass an employee because of his or her disability or retaliate against a person seeking to enforce legal rights.
Lawyers at Leeds Brown, who protect the rights of disabled employees throughout the New York metropolitan area, can help if you experience discrimination or harassment in the workplace. We fully understand what it takes to prove a complex disability discrimination claim. Our staff has decades of experience handling ADA cases and a thorough understanding of its detailed and complicated provisions.
We can help you document your case, file a charge with the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and/or the appropriate New York State and/or New York City agency, negotiate a reasonable accommodation or take your case to trial if that is what is needed to ensure fairness. You may be entitled to monetary damages, reinstatement to your job or promotion and the legal professionals at Leeds Brown have the determination and skill to achieve the results you deserve.
Under the ADA an individual with a disability is someone who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity, has a record or history of having such an impairment or is regarded/perceived as having a disability. Most people think of disability as something purely physical. For example, the inability to get around without a wheelchair, blindness, breathing trouble, inability to use one hand or a speech impediment.
However, the ADA also covers mental impairments which include “intellectual disabilities.” The EEOC reports that there are over 2 million Americans with intellectual disabilities, formerly referred to as mental retardation. In 2008, Congress amended the ADA (the ADA Amendments Act or ADAAA) to make it easier for an individual with an intellectual disability to fall under the definition of disability and receive protection under the statute.
An intellectual disability is “a disability characterized by significant limitations both in intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior that affects many everyday social and practical skills.” Adaptive behavior includes basic skills needed for daily living such as self-care, home living, social skills, health, safety, communication, reading, writing, basic arithmetic, self-direction, and work.
A person with an intellectual disability should, according to the ADAAA, come under the meaning of disabled because he or she is “substantially limited in brain function and other major life activities (for example, learning, reading, and thinking).”
An employer may not discriminate against a qualified person with a real or perceived intellectual disability and must make a reasonable accommodation if it does not impose an undue hardship on the business.
If you have an intellectual disability that substantially limits a major life activity, and you are qualified to perform the job, there are many ways your employee can provide you with accommodations. The best way to understand what you may be entitled to is to look at some examples published by the EEOC:
Accommodations during the application process –
Accommodations that can help an employee with an intellectual disability perform or enjoy the benefits of the job –
Consider the following scenarios that further demonstrate what an employee with an intellectual disability may expect:
Having disability discrimination attorneys at Leeds Brown review your circumstances and advocate on your behalf can eliminate much of the stress that can accompany any discriminatory employment situation. If you or someone you know has an intellectual disability or physical disability, we can compassionately and skillfully work toward securing a positive outcome.
Whether your goal is to get a job, accommodation or an award for monetary damages, the lawyers at Leeds Brown, who protect the workplace rights of disabled employees in New York, are here to help.
Contact our law office for a free case evaluation. Someone can be reached 24/7 at 1-800-585-4658. Time may be of the essence so don’t wait. Call today.