AKRON, Ohio. According to Disability Scoop, disability discrimination claims are on the rise. In 2016, there were 28,073 workplace discrimination claims for bias against individuals with disabilities. In 2016 alone, the U.S. Equal Employment Workplace Commission recovered $131 million in benefits for individuals who were harmed as a result of disability discrimination on the job. The Law Offices of F. Benjamin Riek III are workplace discrimination attorneys in Akron, Ohio, who work closely with individuals who have faced discrimination on the job as a result of their disability. Disability discrimination can make it difficult for hard-working individuals to keep their jobs. Workplaces do not always provide the reasonable accommodations they are required to provide to disabled workers. If you believe you may have been a victim of workplace disability discrimination, you have rights.
Disability discrimination can take many forms, but often the individuals who struggle the most are those with hidden disabilities. While many employers and the general public are aware of physical disabilities, many individuals are unaware that a person can look perfectly healthy and yet suffer from chronic pain or other disability. Workers with “hidden disabilities” may not receive the same level of accommodations that workers with visible disabilities receive. Some employers may believe that these workers are not as committed to their jobs, especially if these workers miss days or are late to work due to chronic pain.
According to the Guardian, approximately half of all disabled individuals live in fear of being fired or losing their jobs and half have experienced workplace harassment due to their disabilities. Many struggle to decide whether to disclose their disability. For instance, individuals suffering from mental health disabilities may fear being stigmatized on the job for disclosing their disability. However, failing to disclose a disability can lead to problems as well, especially when a worker needs accommodations to seek medical care. Unfortunately, sometimes workers face retaliation when they disclose their disabilities. Some workers have even reported cases where they faced threats of termination for speaking up.
Studies have found that disabled people are twice as likely to be unemployed. Part of the problem is the lack of flexibility for individuals living with disabilities. Sometimes the accommodations are minor, but disabled workers may fear asking for them. Workers don’t want to have the perception they are receiving special treatment. However, failing to ask for help can mean that workers fall behind.
If you are a disabled worker and believe that you have been wrongfully terminated or are facing disability discrimination on the job, it is important to understand that there are important laws in place to protect your rights. The Law Office of F. Benjamin Riek III are qualified employment rights lawyers who can work closely with you to help you find a solution. Individuals may be entitled to receive compensation if they were wrongfully terminated or faced discrimination as a result of their disability. Our firm can help. You are not alone.