Disability Discrimination

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. Would you deem Karina disabled under the ADAAA? If so, what reasonable accommodations would you offer to her?

Karina has a medical condition requiring her to take steroids and other medications. This condition led to Karina gaining weight and not able to wear two uniform items, the stockings and heels. These conditions affect her back, circulatory system, and endurance level. Additionally, according to her doctor, Karina must stop wearing the stockings and heels because of her condition. Based on this information, Karina does qualify as “disabled” even if she does not display symptoms that interfere with her ability to perform her duties. By taking medication, Karina is mitigating (reducing) the effects of her illness. However, her employer cannot consider this information in determining if she has a protected disability under the ADAAA. The ADA was passed nearly 20 years ago to provide legal protections for, and to end discrimination against, workers with disabilities. The ADA is a wide-ranging civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on disability. It affords similar protections against discrimination to Americans with disabilities as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which made discrimination based on race, religion, sex, national origin, and other characteristics illegal. Under the ADA, an individual is considered to have a "disability" if that individual either (1) has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more of that person's major life activities, (2) has a record of such an impairment, or (3) is regarded by the covered entity as having such an impairment. The determination of whether any particular condition is considered a disability is made on a case by case basis. When the ADA was first passed into law in 1990, federal courts were very strict in determining which employees met the ADA's definition of a "disability," resulting in the dismissal of many cases. A series of such court decisions made it...
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