Americans With Disabilities Act & Disability Disclosure

Are You Protected by the ADA?
If you have a disability and are qualified to do a job, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) protects you from job discrimination on the basis of your disability. If you have a disability, you must also be qualified to perform the essential functions or duties of a job, with or without reasonable accommodation, in order to be protected from job discrimination by the ADA. This means two things. First, you must satisfy the employer’s requirements for the job, such as education, employment experience, skills, or licenses. Second, you must be able to perform the essential functions of the job with or without reasonable accommodation.

For more specific information about ADA requirements affecting employment visit http://www.ada.gov or contact

Equal Employment
Opportunity Commission

P.O. Box 7033
Lawrence, Kansas 66044
VOICE: 800-669-4000
TDD: 800-669-6820
WEB: www.eeoc.gov

Disability Disclosure

When discussing your disability with an employer, it is critical for you to consider whether or not you will require reasonable accommodation(s) to complete the essential functions of the position for which you are applying. If you will be unable to complete all the essential functions without reasonable accommodation(s), it is important that you tell the employer directly. If you will require reasonable accommodation(s) you should also state this openly and be prepared to suggest possible options that will allow you to do the job safely and productively. Additional information on workplace disclosure.

“Some people with disabilities choose to be ‘overlooked’ because they do not want to declare their disability. The reasons behind this may be a fear of being stigmatized with the ‘rest’ of the people with disabilities. Some just are not comfortable sharing their disability in the workplace. The destructive side to this is that a person with a disability may miss the chance to thrive in the work environment simply because he or she hasn’t asked for the right accommodation.” 
— Nancy Starnes, National Organization on Disability

“Look at the abilities first and factor in what needs to be accommodated by the disability second.” 
— Deidre A. Davis, director ADA Services, Wal-Mart

Video: Disability Disclosure in the Workplace