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Reasonable Accomadation & Americans with Disabilities Act

Essay by   •  September 6, 2011  •  Essay  •  881 Words (4 Pages)  •  2,352 Views

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Reasonable accommodation can be defined as any modification or adjustment to a job or the work environment that will enable a qualified applicant with a disability to participate in the application process or to perform essential job functions. Reasonable accommodation also includes adjustments, structural changes, and job changes, such as job restructuring and reassignment to assure that a qualified individual with a disability has rights and privileges in employment equal to those of employees without disabilities. An employer must make reasonable accommodation to the known physical or mental disability of a qualified individual unless that accommodation would impose an undue hardship to the employer. Milligan's offer is a reasonable accommodation to Keltner's disability because he is offering Keltner a reassignment from the reference department into the cataloging department. Keltner's manic depressive condition causes him to suffer from periodic depression. From this depression he would often be absent from work and behave unprofessionally, by staying in his office as much as possible and when he would be pressed to work on the reference desk he would become irritable and snap at other librarians and patrons. Keltner's current position as a reference librarian requires him to accommodate people who come into the library, but because of his condition which causes him to be irritable and depressed at times, Milligan had no other choice but to reassign him to another department where he wouldn't have as much contact with the public.

If Keltner accepts the reassignment it can affect his career because as Keltner said in the case, he doesn't concentrate well when he is depressed and cataloging requires good concentration. In addition, because of his manic depressive condition, if he is unable to perform what is required of him in the cataloging department then the university might fire him or lay him off.

Considering his occasional inability to do his job effectively in the reference department, I do believe that Keltner does have a responsibility to the university to accept reassignment. Even though Keltner is a good reference librarian and when he is not depressed he is a very capable librarian, when his manic depressive condition overcomes him it makes him incapable of completing certain tasks and having contact with the public which is one of the essential duties of a librarian. Additionally, Keltner's co-workers have been complaining that they need to take up the slack for Keltner when he has his down periods, so Keltner should realize that he is putting a burden on his co-workers by not performing his job effectively.

Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, I do not believe that Keltner has recourse to prevent Milligan from reassigning him to the cataloging department. Milligan is not discriminating against Keltner's disability, but because Keltner's disability



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