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The Business & Disability Bulletin

disability is our business

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Disability & Diversity
Keeping Up with the ADA
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Review your employment application for questions that may force someone to disclose a disability.

This summer Disability Network received a complaint from a woman who was a applying for a nurses aide job in Southwest Michigan. The employer was a large company with an on-line application. This woman reported that the application asked:
Do you need an accommodation to do this job? Yes or No
She had to choose "yes" or "no" in order to proceed to theComputer Mouse next question and complete the application. This question is illegal because it inquires about disability status. By honestly answering "yes", a potential employee has been forced to disclose that they have a disability.

We contacted the Human Resources staff with this finding, who spoke to a company attorney. The company quickly changed the question to:

Can you perform the essential functions of the position with or without an accommodation?

This question asks if the applicant can do the job, regardless of whether or not they would need an accommodation. Although the difference between the questions may seem subtle at first, one question probes for protected (disability) information while the second question asks about performance capabilities.

Fortunately for the business, the individual who alerted us was not interested in filing a complaint. She was satisfied that the company took immediate action to comply with the law.

Increase Your Knowledge! Free Web-Based Training Available!

CheckboxAccommodating People with Cognitive Disabilities in the Workplace, a Self-Paced Class:
CheckboxSign up for Job Accommodation Network's Annual Webcast Series: http://askjan.org/webcast/index.htm

Disability & Diversity

Business to Business

Ed Nagelkirk

Listen to Ed Nagelkirk, Herman Miller Workplace Solutions and Services Manager talk about how his company's perception of the ADA has shifted over the last 20 years: http://www.youtube.com/user/DisNetLakeshore#p/u/6/o8MqF7g_suw
October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month!
Order your FREE National Disability Employment Awareness Month 2010 Poster. http://www.dol.gov/odep/pubs/ndeam2010poster.htm

NDEAM Poster

Keeping Up with the ADA

Reading up on mediation and court decisions involving the Americans with Disabilities Act is a great way to check up on your own policies, practices, and assumptions!
CheckboxTake this "quiz." Read the questions below and think about how you would answer. Then, follow the links to find out what the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and courts had to say.
Does requiring a worker to be 100% healed or have no restrictions when returning to work violate the ADA?

You have just hired a person to clean rooms at your hotel. Cleaning staff are required to use pagers. Your new employee tells you she will need a vibrating pager instead of the typical audible version because she has a hearing loss. Do you retain her as an employee or let her go? Find out at:
The Business & Disability Bulletin is a free electronic newsletter for business leaders and human resource professionals in Southwest Michigan who believe in the value of an inclusive workforce and in creating a welcoming customer environment.

This newsletter is published bi-annually by Disability Network Southwest Michigan and is funded in part bythe Michigan ADA Steering Committee under grant #H133G060097 from the National Institute on Disability Rehabilitation and Research. This newsletter can be found on our website at www.dnswm.org/employment.aspx.