Disability discrimination is a form of harassment that occurs in situations where an employer treats a disabled individual unfavorably because of their disability. While there are challenges towards proving that the employer or other entity was discriminating based on the disability, you should never be treated any differently than an employee who doesn’t suffer from a disability. If you believed that you’ve been treated poorly because of your disability, consider contacting our disability discrimination attorney today to schedule a consultation. Here at West Coast Employment Lawyers, we want all of our customers to get the compensation that they deserve.
What Is Disability Discrimination?
If ever you’ve been put at a disadvantage or treated poorly because of your disability, this is disability discrimination. While there are times when this discrimination is considered to be lawful, there are a wide range of scenarios that would be treated as intentional discrimination or unlawful discrimination. When this occurs, it’s possible for you to pursue legal options with the assistance of an employment lawyer such as ours. Keep in mind that not everyone who has a medical condition is directly protected by disability discrimination law.
In order to fall under this protection, you will need to show that you are disabled in at least one of three ways. If you have a mental or physical condition that significantly limits a major activity like talking, walking, or hearing, this would classify as a disability. The same is true if you have a history of a disability that could affect you again in the future. In most cases, this refers to cancer that’s in remission. You can also be considered to be disabled if you have a mental or physical impairment that’s not minor or transitory, the latter of which refers to injuries and medical conditions that last around six months or less. If you fall under any of these three categories, disability discrimination law states that you have legal recourse if you have been treated unfairly by an employer or other entity.
Primary Causes of Disability Discrimination
There are a myriad of causes that would classify as disability discrimination in the state of California. Among the most common causes of disability discrimination involves a lack of accommodation, which typically occurs when public places don’t provide disabled individuals with safe methods to exit or enter facilities. Regarding accommodate, employers are required to provide disabled employees with reasonable accommodations. If they don’t provide these accommodations and haven’t listened to your requests to add them, they could be held liable.
It’s also common for these disability discrimination issues to arise as a result of a lack of inclusion. Many employers will exclude or isolate disabled individuals unfairly. The Americans With Disabilities Act that became law in 1990 states that employers are directly prohibited from either segregating job applicants due to disability or screening applications in a manner that specifically eliminates disabled individuals who have applied for the position. Your employer is also prohibited from creating barriers that eliminate disabled individuals from being promoted into administrative positions.
Another main cause of disability discrimination involves unemployment issues. Since many employers will knowingly or unknowingly avoid hiring disabled individuals, it’s difficult for these individuals to garner the experience that they need to get a job, which serves to create a kind of cycle of discrimination. There are also many times when disabled individuals are harassed in the workplace because of their disability, which is illegal. Harassment can include making offensive remarks about the disability. While all comments such as these aren’t illegal, it becomes illegal when the harassment is severe or frequent enough that it has created an offensive or hostile work environment. The harasser can be anyone from the employee’s manager to a coworker.
If you’re still unsure of whether your case would classify as disability discrimination, call our employment lawyer today so that we can take a closer look at your case and hopefully provide you with the answer you’re looking for.
What to Do When You’re a Victim of Disability Discrimination
The first step that you should take is to approach the employer who you believe to be responsible for your discrimination. Talk with this employer and assert your rights to being treated fairly. If the building that you work in can’t accommodate your disability, you can address this issue with your employer in the hopes that they will make the appropriate changes. If these changes aren’t made, it’s possible for you to file an internal complaint.
When you file a formal complaint, you’re providing your employer with another opportunity to address the situation at hand. Even if your supervisor or manager hasn’t corrected the problem like they told you they would, upper management in the company or the human resources department might be more willing to take the problem seriously. If they respond well to your internal complaint, you might be able to avoid having to contact an employment lawyer, which could save you a significant amount of time.
However, there are invariably going to be times when even an internal complaint isn’t addressed like it’s supposed to be. In such a situation, you could file a charge of discrimination, which must be done within 300 days of the act of discrimination. In California, this complaint is filed with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing. This department will decide if you have the right to use. If you’re eventually given this right, you will have the opportunity to file a lawsuit with these charges. Since the deadlines to file a lawsuit are short, you should contact a lawyer such as ours immediately.
How Our Disability Discrimination Attorney Can Help
Here at West Coast Employment Lawyers, we want to help every customer who walks through our doors obtain a favorable outcome for their case. If you feel as though you’ve been discriminated against by an employer because of your disability, we can assist you in building a strong case. While you can reach out to our lawyer at any time during the process, it’s highly recommended that you contact us before filing a charge of discrimination with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing. It’s at this point in time that we can start preparing a lawsuit to be filed if you’re given the right to sue. A lawsuit can help you obtain the compensation that you’re owed.
Whether you haven’t been given a promotion that you deserve or believe that you weren’t hired because of your disability, our lawyers here at West Coast Employment lawyers can help you explore your legal options to determine if your case requires the filing of a lawsuit.