Laws Addressing Disability Discrimination and Accommodations in California

Recognizing the daily challenges of individuals living with disabilities has seen California establish numerous measures to curb discrimination practices within workplaces in matters concerning disabilities as well as guaranteeing reasonable accommodation. Douglas Han of Justice Law Corporation cites that these accommodations are parts integral to state laws such as the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), the Unruh Civil Rights Act, and the Disabled Persons Act.

Firstly, the laws provide that prospective employers should not reject hiring or training people with disabilities. Qualified disabilities involve physical disabilities, medical conditions, and mental conditions. Physical disabilities include impairments, impairments of major bodily systems, and conditions limiting major life activities. Medical conditions comprise genetic conditions connected to sicknesses and health impediments that oppose cancer. On the other hand, mental-based conditions comprise diverse types of mental weaknesses as well as intellectual/cognitive disabilities such as autism, clinical depression, and bipolar disorder.

Secondly, these legislations also force employers to structure reasonable accommodation. The scenario of reasonable accommodation is described by Douglas Han, Founding Attorney of the Justice Law Corporation, as “modified equipment, work-from-home options, interpreters, job restructuring, and accessibility, amongst others.” Preparing workplaces to be accessible for persons in wheelchairs is an example of reasonable accommodations. Under California law, failure to reasonably accommodate an employee with any of these conditions is considered an act of discrimination. “Employers must engage in an interactive process to determine reasonable accommodation, and a failure to do so is a standalone actionable claim,” says Douglas Han of the Justice Law Corporation.

You should realize that you can only file a discrimination complaint after asking your employer for a reasonable accommodation. If you have a disability, and you are being discriminated against at work, you likely have protections under the law that make it unlawful for your employer to discriminate against you on account of your disability. Should the response to your request for reasonable accommodation not be acceptable, then you may lodge a complaint either with EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) or with CRD (California Civil Rights Department). It would be advisable that before taking action in regard to your case, you should consult a sound legal firm on the appropriate course of action to take. Thorough research should be done to evaluate the potential legitimacy of your claim before pursuing legal action, as successful lawsuits can result in victims receiving significant settlement money for their discrimination case.

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