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Disabled workers continue to face challenges in the workplace

Individuals with disabilities have the right to fair treatment and certain accommodations in the workplace. On the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, disabled workers in Florida still find it necessary to fight for their rights and an equal standing in their place of employment. The intent of the ADA was to protect the interests of those with disabilities in the workforce, but the act may have led to unintended consequences.

The ADA means employers cannot discriminate against a disabled individual at any stage in the employment process. They must also provide reasonable accommodations in the workplace. These requirements may have resulted in employers being more reluctant to hire individuals with disabilities. Despite the ADA being in place for three decades, disabled employees still struggle to find equal employment opportunities and gain economic independence.

One reason why Florida employers may be reluctant to hire disabled individuals is because it can be expensive to provide certain accommodations in the workplace. There is also the possibility of a lawsuit if there are allegations of noncompliance with the ADA. In reality, providing workers with what they need to succeed with a disability is not nearly as expensive, disruptive or complex as expected in many situations.

When disabled workers are treated unfairly or experience discrimination in the workplace, it may be appropriate to seek compensation through a civil claim. Employers can be held to account for ignorance of or willful noncompliance with the ADA. If an employee believes he or she is a victim, it may help to start with a thorough evaluation and assessment of the individual case.

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