I’m opening a bookstore in downtown Raleigh. I want to make sure my store is ADA compliant and I adhere to ADA accommodation hiring laws. Please tell me about the ADA.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) went into effect in 1992. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is the federal agency that enforces the ADA.
The Law Office of Stephen M. Corby, a premier corporate law firm in North Carolina, has business attorneys who are experienced in providing business legal services regarding ADA compliance. The ADA applies to all aspects of employment, including job advertisements, job applications, job interviews, and post-offer medical examinations. Title I of the ADA prohibits discrimination in employment and requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations for employees with disabilities. Only “covered entities” must comply with Title I of the ADA. The term “covered entities” includes employers with 15 or more employees, employment agencies, labor organizations, and joint labor-management committees.
Title I protects “qualified employees with disabilities.” The term qualified means that the individual satisfies the skill, experience, education, and other job-related requirements of the position sought or held, and can perform the primary job tasks of the position, with or without reasonable accommodation.
In regard to hiring, the EEOC advises employers to consider including a statement in job advertisements and notices that they do not discriminate on the basis of disability or other legally prohibited bases. For example: We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, age, national origin or disability. Furthermore,employers have an obligation to make reasonable accommodations to enable applicants with disabilities to apply for jobs. For example, information about jobs should be available in a location that is accessible to people with mobility impairments. If a job advertisement provides only a telephone number to call for information, a TDD (telecommunication device for the deaf) number should be included, unless a telephone relay service has been established. Printed job information in an employment office or on employee bulletin boards should be made available, as needed, to persons with visual or other reading impairments.
The ADA requires reasonable accommodation in three aspects of employment: 1) to ensure equal opportunity in the application process, 2) to enable a qualified individual with a disability to perform the essential functions of a job, and 3) to enable an employee with a disability to enjoy equal benefits and privileges of employment. Examples of reasonable accommodations include making existing facilities accessible; job restructuring; part-time or modified work schedules; acquiring or modifying equipment; changing tests, training materials, or policies; providing qualified readers or interpreters; and reassignment to a vacant position.
On September 25, 2008, the ADA Amendments Act (ADAAA) was passed. This Act changes the interpretation of the definition of disability. It did not, however, change the original three-part definition of disability. Congress fixed the definition of disability to cover more people and as a result, prevent more discrimination. For employers, this means they should no longer be focusing so much on who has a disability, but instead should be focusing on making accommodations and avoiding discrimination. Call The Law Office of Stephen M. Corby today for a consultation. One of our business lawyers from our corporate law firm would be happy to discuss ADA with you in more detail.