Are job requirements discriminatory in some workplaces?

When you’re an employee working with disabilities, you want to know that you’re being treated fairly. You don’t want your disability to hold you back, and it’s fair to say that you don’t want your employer to hold you back because of it, either. There are conduct standards in the workplace, and employers have to uphold them regardless of your disability. However, there are lines that should not be crossed and that can be red flags to show you that you’re being discriminated against for your disability.

Your job-related requirements may be things like training of a specific type, possessing licensing for your job, or having particular physical or mental capabilities. You should also show the ability to work with other people or under pressure, depending on your job. As always, health and safety requirements will also have to be upheld.

Employees are held to these standards regardless or their races, religions, disabilities or other factors. If an employee shows he or she can’t do the job, then he or she may be terminated. What’s the difference between not doing the job and being set up to fail though?

Here’s a good example. If you have been working with a company and have high marks, then your job should be going well. If you’re asked to perform acts you can’t do, though, and take a hit to your marks, that could be an issue. For example, if you work in stock and usually only load the bottom shelving because of being in a wheelchair, you can’t have an employer who expects you to load top shelving units. If that’s a reason for being terminated, then you may have a case for discrimination, because your employer would have known you couldn’t do the second part of the job before he or she hired you.

Source: The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, “The Americans With Disabilities Act: Applying Performance And Conduct Standards To Employees With Disabilities,” accessed Oct. 15, 2015

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