Thank you for your reply. I believe you would be protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA
, in this situation, and the employer cannot therefore deny you reasonable accommodation unless the employer could show it would be an undue hardship for them, meaning it would cause them significant difficulty or expense.
To be protected under the ADA, you must have, have a record of, or be regarded as having a substantial, as opposed to a minor, impairment. A substantial impairment is one that significantly limits or restricts a major life activity such as hearing, seeing, speaking, walking, breathing, performing manual tasks, caring for oneself, learning or working. Having diabetes could be seen as restricting life activities because it does require you to carefully monitor and test your blood sugar and respond accordingly.
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. Essential functions are the fundamental job duties that you must be able to perform on your own or with the help of a reasonable accommodation.
Reasonable accommodation is any change or adjustment to a job or work environment that permits a qualified applicant or employee with a disability to participate in the job application process, to perform the essential functions of a job, or to enjoy benefits and privileges of employment equal to those enjoyed by employees without disabilities. While I don't know the specifics of your job, I would imagine that testing blood sugar levels and eating something could be accomplished relatively quickly, and would not cause a hardship to the employer.
The ADA forbids an employer from discriminating against you in all employment practices, such as hiring, firing, promotions
, pay, benefits and leave. They also cannot discriminate against you for asserting your rights under the ADA.
Assuming you have told your employer that you consider yourself disabled and therefore protected under the ADA and entitled to reasonable accommodation, and they have refused to acknowledge this, your next step is to file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission or EEOC
. If you have been discriminated against, you are entitled to a remedy that will place you in the position you would have been in if the discrimination had never occurred. You may be entitled to hiring, promotion, reinstatement, back pay
, or reasonable accommodation, including reassignment, depending on the circumstances. You may also be entitled to attorneys fees. How to file a charge with the EEOC can be found here
. Information on how the EEOC handles your complaint is found here
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