Disabled rights roundup

by Walter Olson on August 8, 2012

  • Lawprof’s classic argument: you thought I was capable of going on a workplace rampage with a gun, and though that isn’t true, it means you perceived me as mentally disabled so when you fired me you broke the ADA [Above the Law, ABA Journal, NLJ]
  • “Fragrance-induced disabilities”: “The most frequent MCS [Multiple Chemical Sensitivity] accommodation involves implementing a fragrance-free workplace [or workzone] policy” [Katie Carder McCoy, Washington Workplace Law, earlier here, etc.]
  • Netflix seeks permission to appeal order in captioning accommodation case [NLJ, Social Media Law via Disabilities Law, earlier here, here and here]
  • EEOC presses harder on ADA coverage for obesity [PoL, earlier here, here, here, etc.]
  • Disability groups seek class action: “ADA Suit Claims Wal-Mart Checkout Terminals Are Too High for Wheelchair Users” [ABA Journal, Recorder]
  • Crunch postponed until after election: “Despite delays, chair lifts coming to public pools” [NPR Morning Edition, earlier here, here, here, etc.] Punished for advocacy: disabled groups organize boycotts of “hotels whose leaders, they say, have participated in efforts to delay regulations.” [USA Today]
  • Disabled student sues St. Louis U. med school over failure to provide more time on tests [St. L. P-D]

{ 8 comments }

1 William Nuesslein 08.08.12 at 6:35 am

A boycott of hotels by ADA advocates is Christmas come early.

2 mjs 08.08.12 at 10:27 am

Am I the only one who thinks the above list presents ample evidence that advocates for the disabled and their ever-present lawyers have pushed the ADA far beyond its original scope and intent?

3 DEM 08.08.12 at 11:27 am

Will the chair lifts be of sufficient strength to lift the morbidly obese in and out of pools? If not, we will have another ADA violation, I suppose. For if the ADA is to mean anything, our 600lb brethern must be provided mechanically-assisted access to swimming pools. At no cost to them, of course.

4 DEM 08.08.12 at 11:31 am

Obama’s EEOC is, by the way, merely imitating The Simpsons:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King-Size_Homer

5 mojo 08.08.12 at 1:16 pm

I think a gaff would be cheaper, for what it’s worth.

6 Hugo S. Cunningham 08.15.12 at 7:18 am

@mjs–

Actually, the original ADA law signed by Bush Senior contained most of the features we hate today. In the public discussion, many like you assumed it was about *reasonable* accomodations like wider doorways for wheelchairs and disability-conscious design of new construction. The advocates pushed for and got much more, however, eg. privileging anti-social and/or destructive behavior as a “mental handicap.”
That is one of two reasons I rate Bush Senior as a mediocre President (though not a disastrous President like his son.).

7 boblipton 08.15.12 at 7:57 am

It’s not like congress had anything to do with it.

Bob

8 Hugo S. Cunningham 08.15.12 at 3:07 pm

@boblipton–

We expect Democratic Congresses to vote for bills like ADA. An able President, however, can use the threat of a veto to mobilize the public and get the most obnoxious provisions changed.

What we got was Bush Senior’s understanding of “compassionate conservatism”– write a blank check for the Left on a handful of high-visibility issues, in order to get a free hand on other issues that matter more to you. My understanding of “compassion” in conservatism is different: Right-wing positions that help the poor, eg vouchers for parochial schools when they offer the best inner city education; effective public safety; removal of guild restrictions that shut the poor out of jobs they are qualified for, etc. My type of “compassionate” conservative would agree with the Left only when the Left is correct, eg funding decent educational opportunities for all, dismantling Jim Crow, maintaining workplace safety, etc.

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