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Reasonable accommodation for an employee’s disability

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Sidney worked for the post office as a letter carrier, but after Sidney had hip surgery, he was no longer able to do the work of a letter carrier that required extended periods of walking and lifting of moderately heavy loads. After Sidney had exhausted the sick leave that he was entitled to take, he asked to be reassigned from letter carrier duty to light duty work in the post office where he worked. The post office did assign Sidney to a temporary light duty position, but after several weeks, the post office notified Sidney that there was no permanent light duty position for him. Sidney then requested that the post office create a permanent light duty position for him, but the post office refused that request, and Sidney accepted disability retirement. Sidney then sued the post office for failing to reasonably accommodate his disability. Is Sidney correct? What does an employer have to do to provide reasonable accommodation for an employee's disability?

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Sidney cannot sue the post office for failing to reasonably accommodate his disability since it is required by the law that an employer must provide a reasonable accommodation to an employee with a disability but only in the case when doing so would not cause significant problem or ...

Solution Summary

Discusses reasonable accommodation that an employer has to provide for an employee's disability.

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ADA - "Reasonable accommodations"

There are three categories of "Reasonable accommodations":

"(i) modifications or adjustments to a job application process that enable a qualified applicant with a disability to be considered for the position such qualified applicant desires; or

(ii) modifications or adjustments to the work environment, or to the manner or circumstances under which the position held or desired is customarily performed, that enable a qualified individual with a disability to perform the essential functions of that position; or

(iii) modifications or adjustments that enable a covered entity's employee with a disability to enjoy equal benefits and privileges of employment as are enjoyed by its other similarly situated employees without disabilities."(4)

Listed below are three examples of reasonable accommodations.

Case 1 HIV (Modified or Part-Time Schedule)

An employee with HIV infection must take medication on a strict schedule. The medication causes extreme nausea about one hour after ingestion, and generally lasts about 45 minutes. The employee asks that he be allowed to take a daily 45-minute break when the nausea occurs. Does the employer need to grant this request absent undue hardship? or not? Explain your reason why or why not? Give references for your argument.

Case 2 Diabetic Employee (Modified Workplace Policies )

An employer has a policy prohibiting employees from eating or drinking at their workstations. An employee with insulin-dependent diabetes explains to her employer that she may occasionally take too much insulin and, in order to avoid going into insulin shock, she must immediately eat a candy bar or drink fruit juice. The employee requests permission to keep such food at her workstation and to eat or drink when her insulin level necessitates. Does the employer must modify its policy to grant this request, absent undue hardship? Why or why not? Give references for your argument.

Case #3 Employee with Learning Disability (Reassignment)

An employer is considering reassigning an employee with a learning disability (difficult memorizing things) to a position which requires the ability to speak Spanish in order to perform an essential function. The employee never learned Spanish and wants the employer to send him to a course to learn Spanish. Is the employer required to provide this training as part of the obligation to make a reassignment? Why or Why not...Give references for your argument.

Please note when using other sources; try to use the text book Foundations of the Vocational Rehabilitation Process 5th Edition by Stanford E. Rubin, Richard T. Roessler. You can use the library.

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I am looking for ideas and insight into these cases. Please provide references for outside sources. Thank you.

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