"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."
Discrimination of any type can be extremely stressful and traumatic for an employee, and some types of discrimination are particularly egregious because they are directed at some of the most vulnerable workers in our country. The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended, is one of the key federal laws which, along with comparable state law provisions under the Florida Civil Rights Act, addresses harassment and discrimination because of an individual’s actual or perceived disability or handicap. Importantly, these laws contain severe penalties for employers who are found to have engaged in unacceptable, illegal treatment of employees with disabilities and handicaps.
If you believe that you are the victim of disability discrimination in your own workplace, it is essential that you contact an experienced labor and employment lawyer in Miami as soon as possible to learn how to protect your rights. Not only is disability discrimination emotionally exhausting, but it can also have serious, long-term effects on an employee’s physical and mental health. Working with a compassionate advocate is one of the best ways to ensure that you can seek the justice that you deserve.
Read more below to get a better idea about some of the types of disability discrimination that often take place in the workplace, as well as to learn about how the Law Office of Keith M. Stern, P.A. can fight to stand up to any current or former employer who disregards their obligation to comply with the ADA. You deserve to work with a legal team who understands that your case, like every case, is unique, so that you receive the individual attention and respect that you should expect as we work to enforce the rights guaranteed by State and Federal law to protect individuals with disabilities. No one wants to be a victim of discrimination in the workplace, and we are proud to help you to right these wrongs.
Contact us as soon as possible in order to schedule a free initial consultation, where you will be able to speak directly with Keith M. Stern or a member of our team to obtain expert advice. We know that filing a Charge of Discrimination or an eventual lawsuit against an employer can be extremely stressful, and we want you to be confident in the support and representation that our firm can provide before you take these important steps forward.
According to the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), disability discrimination is “when an employer or other entity covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended, or the Rehabilitation Act, as amended, treats a qualified individual with a disability who is an employee or applicant unfavorably because she has a disability.” Additionally, it can take the form of an employer “treat(ing) an applicant or employee less favorably because she has a history of a disability (such as cancer that is controlled or in remission) or because she is believed to have a physical or mental impairment that is not transitory (lasting or expected to last six months or less) and minor (even if she does not have such an impairment).” Similarly, under state law, the Florida Civil Rights Act (FCRA), Florida Statutes §760.10(1)(a): “It is unlawful employment practice for an employer: To discharge or to fail or refuse to hire any individual, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual with respect to compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, handicap, or marital status.”
Under the ADA and FCRA, there are many different situations that can arise that may constitute disability or handicap discrimination, and you are entitled to protection from these illegal behaviors.
One way that a manager or employer can engage in disability or handicap discrimination is by implementing policies that are based on a disability, such as hiring, firing, promotions, pay, job assignments, training, benefits, or any other aspect of a company’s business operations. One way for determining whether or not a policy is discriminatory towards individuals with a disability or handicap depends on whether or not the policy disproportionately impacts the individual without real business necessity, such as requiring a driver’s license for a job that does not involve driving. Such a policy, among others, can disproportionately impact disabled and hanicapped workers who are unable to get a driver’s license, despite the fact that the job does not require driving as a central part of the employee’s work.
Harassment because an individual’s disability or handicap can be a “gray” area when determining whether or not any State of Federal laws have been violated. However, other situations may be overt and more clearly demonstrate that disability discrimination has taken place. Regardless of whether or not your situation seems clear, our experience at the Law Office of Keith M. Stern, P.A. will help guide you through the complex factual and legal issues in disability and handicap discrimination cases to determine the appropriate course of action to protect your rights.
Harassment against employees with disabilities can range from repeated, derogatory remarks about a physical or mental impairment–or even a perceived handicap–to threats of termination because of challenges an employee may have in carrying out his or her essential functions without an accommodation.
If you are the victim of discrimination based on a disability, there are a range of penalties and remedies the law provides for employers who violate the law, including through a civil action (i.e., a lawsuit) against your employer. There are many examples of settlements between employers and victimized employees for disability discrimination cases brought both by private attorneys and by the EEOC. At the Law Office of Keith M. Stern, P.A., we will work to efficiently determine the appropriate course of action for your specific case and provide recommendations to you about the range of potential lost wages and other damages you may be able to seek from your current or former employer.
The amount of any potential settlement that we may work to try and facilitate on your behalf depends on a variety of factors, including but not limited to your own income, the length of any period of unemployment, the nature of the discrimination you were subjected to, and other elements under the law. In order to understand more about your rights, please contact us for your initial consultation.
As soon as you contact us, we’ll begin working to learn how we can help address any discrimination against you because of a disability or handicap in the workplace. Our experience working as advocates for employees with disabilities in Miami can be a significant advantage for you as you begin to mount a fight against your current or former employer to enforce your rights as guaranteed under Florida and Federal law.