Conditions covered under the ADA
Dear Helping Friend,
I have suffered with a daily vascular headache for over 24 years, which significantly hampers my day-to-day activities. Though I am on SSD and have continually tried various jobs, I am often let go, usually due to a lack of flexibility in the situation, which I need. I was relecently released from a temp assignment due to the fact they were not able to accomadate my needs, though the quality of my work was very good.
The short of it is I am searching all over the net tonight to find out why chronic pain or chronic headache, substantiated with medical documention is NOT covered under the ADA. Can you explain this to me? I was informed of this by the agent who released me from an assignment ( for no reason other than they could not accommodate my scheduling need). She stated, "Headaches are not covered because they are 'common'." However my headache is daily and constant.. My specific diagnosis is "migraine variant" and I am currently under a headache specialist's care in Michigan.
1 Answer from Attorneys
Re: Conditions covered under the ADA
It is usually not a good idea to take legal advice from your employer. Severe headaches may be a disability under federal and state disability discrimination laws if they substantially limit a major life activity.
The main issue in your case is whether or not you can do the job and whether the accommodation you require is reasonable. The law does not require an employer to keep an employee who has a disability if that person cannot do the job. The employer does have to provide REASONABLE accomodations that do not create an undue burdon for the employer. If the employuer could reasonable accommodate your scheduling needs and if this would make it possible for you to do your job, then it was illegal not to do so and to fire you.
There is more information about disability discrimination on my website, http://www.maslaw.com.
If you want to discus the facts of your case in more detail, please contact me at 248-642-6020 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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