Americans with Disabilities and Reasonable Accommodations

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* Americans with Disabilities and Reasonable Accommodations Human Resources Fundamentals Americans with Disabilities and Reasonable Accommodations Since 1973, American workers have been covered to some extent by disability law. The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 was first legislation, signed by President Richard Nixon that covered individuals with disabilities in Section 503, even though it only covered federal contractors and subcontractors with government contracts over the amount of $10,000. These employers are required to use affirmative action in employing and promoting qualified individuals with disabilities. In 1990, President George H.W. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) into law. Title I of the ADA ensured that people with disabilities would have equal treatment and equal access to employment opportunities. This law includes any business with 15 or more employees, whether government contractors or not. This means that every employer is required to offer equal opportunity in selection, testing and hiring of qualified individuals. Employers would also be required to provide job accommodations for applicants and workers who have disabilities if those accommodations would not impose and undue hardship on the organization. The employer must also provide equal opportunity for promotion and benefits under this law. Information regarding the ADA can be obtained from the Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy. ODEP does not enforce this law. Enforcement of this law, where it pertains to employment, falls under the powers of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In the original ADA, an individual would qualify for protection if they suffered from physical or mental impairment that significantly impacted their life in an adverse way. Having a documented record of this impairment was beneficial in proving a
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