Saturday, January 26, 2008

ADA in the Balance: New Legislation

Via Katja at Broken Clay, Steven Kuuisto blogs about the ADA Restoration Act. For those who don't know, the ADA is losing a lot of its power in the courts.

Please fax your senator and representative to stress the importance of this bill. Anyone could become disabled at any time--you, your parents, your kids, your significant other, your friend. With an aging population and an increasing number of people with chronic conditions able to manage them with contemporary medicine, this bill affects a lot of people.

For examples of how limited court readings have become, at the Consortium of Citizens with Disabilities there are stories of a number of people with disabilities who have faced discrimination, including Carey McClure, an electrician with muscular dystrophy whom the court said was not disabled, though he used a wheelchair, because he adapted so well. Nevermind that muscular dystrophy is progressive or that he can't walk, can't participate in many activities, and was fired because his disability. If muscular dystrophy and wheelchair use doesn't qualify as disabled, what exactly does? The courts have also upheld firings for intellectual disability, diabetes, epilepsy, and multiple sclerosis, among others, when the employee could do the work or needed minimum accommodation.

Simple things you can do to pass this legislation at Road to Freedom.

Remember that most ADA accommodations requested by employees are cost free or nearly cost free. Nevertheless, employers are more hesitant to hire people with disabilities these days.

The text of the bill is here. Surely the courts won't find a way to misread this, too.


Blog [with]tv said...

Thank you for the link to Planet of the Blind in this informative post. And welcome to the Blogosphere! I've added you to two blogrolls - Planet of the Blind and Blog [with]tv. We look forward to getting to know you.

FridaWrites said...

You're very welcome. Thanks for the links in return and for your activism over the years.