The majority of people across California spend most of their week in the workplace. Employment provides a means of paying the bills, enjoying leisure time and ultimately making sure that families are secure.
While some working days are harder than others and work-related pressure is fairly normal, this should never cross the line into unlawful activity. Both state and federal laws protect workers from harassment, discrimination and hostile work environments.
Unfortunately, some employers and co-workers may fail to take heed of the law and discriminate against people because of a disability. Physical disability is a protected class in California and under federal law. Discrimination on this basis can result in serious legal ramifications for employers. What does disability discrimination look like, and how can it be tackled?
Being denied opportunities
Whether you are applying for a job with a new employer or seeking an in-house promotion, you cannot be passed over on the basis of your disability. Employers can take into account your education, skills and relevant experience. However, if you have a disability, this cannot be factored in. As with any other employee, workers with disabilities should be judged solely on their job performance.
Making your work more difficult
Employers have a legal duty to make reasonable accommodations for workers with disabilities. Accommodations come in numerous forms. One common example is making the workspace wheelchair accessible. If an employer refuses to make reasonable accommodations or even goes out of their way to make your working life more difficult, this is likely to be considered disability discrimination.
Everyone in California has a right to work in an environment that is free from discrimination. If you have been singled out in the workplace because of your disability, be sure to check out your legal options.