The Americans with Disabilities Amendment Act (ADAAA)
Effective January 1, 2009 the law amending the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) goes into effect.
The Act retains the ADA’s basic definition of “disability” as an impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, a record of such an impairment, or being regarded as having such an impairment. However, it changes the way that these statutory terms should be interpreted.
There are three major changes to the current law.
1. The ADAAA prohibits employers from considering the effects of mitigating measures such as hearing aids, medication, prosthetic devices, etc. when determining whether someone has a disability. However, eyeglasses and contact lenses may still be taken into account.
2. The amendment expands the list of “major Life activities” to include:
caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating,sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, working and the operation of major bodily functions, such as functions of the immune system, normal cell growth and digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine and reproductive functions.
3. The law covers workers whose employers discriminate against them basedon a perception that the worker is impaired, regardless of whether the worker has a disability. This protection does not apply to persons with short-term impairments. The ADA provides broad coverage to protect anyone who faces discrimination on the basis of a disability.
Employers should review their employment policies regarding disabilities and reasonable accommodations. Employers with lengthy, detailed policies which include definitions of what constitutes a disability should consult with legal counsel about whether any changes are necessary.
Managers should trained on the changes to the ADA’s definition of a person who is “regarded as” disabled. It is now possible for just about anyone with a non-temporary impairment to bring a charge of discrimination. Companies will probably receive more requests for reasonable accommodations due to the changes in the law.
For additional information we would like to share a link provided by Karen Moore of Life Insurance Quotes:
Thank you, Karen.
Wheelchair ADA ramps says
I think the new amendments are much needed but there seems to be a lot of gray area when it comes to someone being “regarded as” disabled. It leaves the door open to people with questionable morals to take advantage. This area should be tightened up a bit.
I agree with the comment already made. The courts will probably tighten it up or we will have a lot of people around here fitting the category regarded as mentally disabled.
kim-free information exchange says
I strongly support this one. I believe physically challenged people should not be discriminated to any extent.
roy coy says
still something is not right when you have corporations that can refuse or delay honoring requests for accommodations…for example, recently manchester wolves, an arena football team decided to use local volunteer (underage) interpreters and not hire one of local licensed interpreters for recent meetings..as the story goes, they are NOT in violation…..how? in my view, the city bonds for that arena should be revoked.
When considering someone for a job, it should only matter if they have glasses or contacts if the job requires good sight. Jobs that require driving, flying, etc should check, but others not so much.
What if I wish to file a claim but have surpassed the time for presenting a claim ?
I think the amendment changes are fantastic. I don’t think enough people keep in consideration people with disabilities and that is very unfortunate and unfair!
I can’t tell if they’ve really cleaned up the law or if they’re just making it much more difficult to understand. A lot of the time an employer can’t ignore the fact that they’re hiring a disabled person.
It is good that laws are now more considerate to handicap access. It’s about time.
.-= simon @ wheelchair ramps´s last blog ..Complementary Health Therapy Treatment =-.