Everyone has a right to dignified treatment while on the job. Unfortunately, we live in a world where not everyone respects those with limitations.
On the flip side, many who have disabilities continue getting hired. Also, the law provides significant protection against unfair treatment. Familiarity with the specifics of disability mandates goes a long way.
What the law protects against
Federal law prevents companies from refusing to hire someone because of a disability. It is equally unlawful to fire, demote or refuse to promote a staffer for the same reason. For that matter, human resources screeners may not demand disclosure of a disability.
Hires with disabilities deserve reasonable accommodations. Examples include wheelchair-accessible cubicles and reserved parking. Employees may need to remind employers of their obligations. Compliance tends to quicken when the request comes with an official medical note.
Harassment in any form remains strictly off-limits. Supervisors and coworkers must not ridicule or otherwise ostracize anyone possessing a disability.
What to do when a violation happens
Those believing a corporate peer is guilty of breaking the law have a right to take action. Evidence of wrongdoing demands preservation. Anyone may file a charge with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Approaching the state fair employment practices agency can be another option. Be mindful that filing deadlines are sometimes as short as 180 days.
Treating everyone with fairness should be a natural human behavior. The harsh reality is that not everyone possesses this better instinct. For these individuals, courtroom justice may be mandatory to elicit compliance.