Online Community

ASA Central

A dynamic online community for ASA members to exchange ideas and best practices, and connect with industry peers in their sector. Visit the site ›
Find Goods & Services

ASA Marketplace

This powerful online resource enables staffing companies to find and access industry supplier information, products and services. Visit the site ›
Daily Publication

Staffing Today Newsletter

Your #1 daily source for news about the workforce industry. With versions available to members and nonmembers. Visit the site ›
Health Care Reform

Affordable Care Act Resources for Staffing

Up-to-date news, resources, interactive tools, and more—all focused on helping ASA members comply with the ACA. Visit the site ›
Advertisers & Exhibitors

Staffing Industry Suppliers

ASA has numerous and diverse marketing opportunities available to help you reach the rapidly growing staffing industry. Visit the site ›
Exclusive Products

ASA Store

From certification packages and study guides to marketing tools and data reports, ASA resources add value to your business. Visit the site ›

How to Handle the New ADA Landscape

Texas Lawyer (04/02/12) Michael P. Maslanka

Attorneys are just beginning to feel the effects of amendments to the Americans With Disabilities Act that went into effect in 2009 and U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission regulations that went into effect last year. The ADA amendments ordered the courts to interpret the law’s language on “substantial limitation” in a pro-employee manner, expanding the number of life activities covered by the law to include everything from cell growth to communication. Experts say this means that lawsuits that once were regularly dismissed are making their way to juries, so that someone who claimed morbid obesity as a disability, for instance, will pass the summary judgment phase if it impacts his or her ability to walk, and under EEOC regulations that interpret the amendments, cancer is considered a covered disability. Lifting and bending are now deemed major life activities, so a painful back condition is considered a “substantial limitation.”

Managers should be trained to recognize that conditions that may not seem to be disabilities could be interpreted by the courts as such. They also should understand that employers generally win cases in which a worker with a disability is not otherwise qualified for the job, meaning that if they cannot be at work the required number of hours per week, no reasonable accommodation will change that. However, employers are obligated under law to reasonably accommodate workers with disabilities, interacting with them to develop a reasonable accommodation.