All employees have a legal right to partake in their work without suffering discrimination. For disabled people, this right is enshrined in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Unfortunately, this message has yet to sink in for many co-workers and even managers. What does disability discrimination in the workplace look like?
Singling an employee out
Sadly, some people go out of their way to make working life more difficult for disabled people. If you’ve been subjected to derogatory comments, made fun of and ridiculed because of your condition, this is a sign of discrimination.
Failing to make reasonable accommodations
All employers have a legal obligation to make reasonable accommodations for disabled employees. For instance, if you use a wheelchair, then the building should be made accessible, as far as is practicable. If you have a disability that impacts your sight, employers should make an effort to ensure that computer software and other aids are installed to make your working life easier.
Such accommodations are reasonable, and they can ensure that you are able to continue doing your job, which you are more than qualified to do.
A policy may have been put in place that applies to everyone on the team. However, because of your disability, the policy makes your life more difficult than others. This is indirect discrimination and if it makes your life unnecessarily difficult as a disabled worker, then it should be redrafted.
You may have certain disabilities, but you can still do your job as effectively as anyone else. If an employer or co-workers are making your working life more difficult than it needs to be, be sure to explore your legal options.