February 2, 2023

New Disability Guidance From the EEOC

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has updated and re-released the resource document, “Hearing Disabilities in the Workplace and the Americans with Disabilities Act.” The document explains how the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to job applicants and employees who are deaf or hard of hearing or have other hearing conditions. 

The newly updated resource outlines how certain pre- and post-job offer disability-related questions can violate the ADA, describes easy-to-access technologies that can make providing a reasonable accommodation for a hearing disability free or low-cost, addresses employer concerns about safety, and shares realistic scenarios of potential discrimination, harassment and retaliation. As a sign of the times, the new resource also provides new or updated examples that reflect available technologies. 

It is important for employers to remember that denying employment opportunities based on stereotypical assumptions or the presumption that an employee/applicant is disabled because of a physical/mental impairment is discriminatory and violates EEO laws.