Employment: EEOC Issues Final Regulations
A bit of history is in order. In 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act was passed. We had almost two decades of EEOC regulations and court decisions to guide us through the myriad of new rules defining such things as "disability," "reasonable accommodation," and "undue hardship."
However, Congress was not particularly happy with the way this was being done. So, as is its prerogative, it passed another law which became effective January 1, 2009 - the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (affectionately referred to as the ADAAA). Congress was not shy about chastising the courts and the EEOC for too narrowly providing protection for individuals with disabilities. In fact, Congress specifically stated: "The definition of disability in this Act [the ADAAA] shall be construed in favor of broad coverage of individuals under this Act, to the maximum extent permitted by the terms of this Act."
As is customary, Congress directed the EEOC to provide regulations to help interpret and provide guidance in applying the ADAAA. Lo and behold, just over two years later, the EEOC has finished writing the regulations which were published just days ago.
Our May edition will go in depth with the new regulations and help guide you through the challenges you face when dealing with employee health issues.
Stay tuned . . .
By Kristen L. Brightmire, firstname.lastname@example.org