Fighting For Justice For Abuse Victims Statewide

Disability discrimination is still a problem in many workplaces

On Behalf of | Mar 28, 2024 | Workplace Discrimination

There has been significant progress for disabled people in California workplaces. In years past, people with disabilities were frequently discriminated against because employers did not want to make the necessary accommodations, did not believe these workers could perform the work or through a simple misunderstanding of how to employ disabled people.

Still, despite better opportunities and laws protecting disabled people seeking employment, discrimination still happens. This is against the law and people who believe they either were not hired because of their disability or were mistreated on the job should understand their legal rights to hold employers accountable.

Statistics show disability discrimination happens to many workers

According to a recent survey, one in three disabled workers asserted that they faced some form of discrimination because of it. Ironically, this is happening while the percentage of disabled people with a job is improving dramatically with over 22% holding a job in 2023. This is substantially lower than the employment rate for people who are not disabled, which sat at nearly 66% last year.

Thirty-one percent of disabled people stated that it is hard to find a job that will provide them with sufficient accommodations so they can work. They also say their disability hinders them in being taken seriously for certain jobs. Twenty-five percent of those who get interviews say they were discriminated against during the process. For 12%, the interview process was inaccessible; 17% felt obstacles when requesting accommodations just for the interview.

California has protections in place for disabled workers

In California, people with disabilities have various rights when they are prospective employees or already have a job. The California Civil Rights Department oversees issues related to the Fair Employment and Housing Act. This covers disability discrimination. People with a disability are expected to receive reasonable accommodations at a workplace so they can work. It also helps those who are disabled and retaliated against for lodging a complaint.

People who are found to have had their rights violated can be awarded damages; rehired to a job they were terminated from; receive back pay or get promoted; have changes made to the employer’s policies; receive punitive damages; and be repaid for legal fees. An accommodation is considered reasonable if the employer will not face an undue hardship because of it.

The worker can be given duties that let them work. They can have their hours adjusted. Or they can get leave if they need it. People who cannot perform the fundamentals of the job are not viewed as being discriminated against.

People who were discriminated against have options

Workplace discrimination of any kind can impede people’s progress and cost them in myriad ways. Regardless of whether it is a failure to hire someone because of their disability, terminating them, harassing them or discriminating against them in any other way, it is important to understand what can be done to address the issue. The case needs to be assessed to determine a suitable strategy so the employee can receive what they are entitled to under the law.