If you have a disability, you undoubtedly know just how difficult it can be to find and keep a good job. Still, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 20% of individuals with disabilities have gainful employment. These workers often need their employers to make reasonable accommodations, though.
The Americans With Disabilities Act requires most employers to reasonably accommodate applicants and employees who have disabilities. Reasonable accommodations are modifications to jobs or working conditions that permit qualified workers with disabilities to do their jobs. Sometimes, though, accommodations are not reasonable.
As you might suspect, employers do not have to turn their workplaces upside down to comply with the ADA. Indeed, accommodations are not reasonable if they involve removing essential job duties. Accommodations also are unreasonable if they require creating new jobs for workers with disabilities. Moreover, employers typically do not need to supply personal items, like eyeglasses, wheelchairs or mobility aids.
Change can be difficult, so some employers might be resistant to providing reasonable accommodations to those who have disabilities. An unwilling employer even might try to argue that accommodations are not reasonable under the circumstances. As a result, if your employer says you should not receive accommodations, you might want to question the explanation.
Provided the ADA applies to your employer, you have a right to reasonable accommodations. Refusing to provide you with reasonable accommodations might violate this right, of course. Ultimately, if your employer’s denial is not reasonable, you may have grounds to lodge an official complaint.