Disability Impacts Us All
In the United States, an estimated 61 million adults live with a physical, intellectual, or developmental disability. That’s 26% of the U.S. population. And even though one-fourth of the population is living with a disability, people with disabilities face discrimination, segregation, and exclusion on a daily basis.
Whether you’re advocating for yourself or for someone you love, Disability Rights Arkansas believes that it is vital that you understand the rights to which people with disabilities are entitled. Knowing your rights can help protect you from being overlooked or taken advantage of. It can empower you to advocate for yourself.
The first thing you may notice when reading through our Pocket Guide to Your Rights is how familiar they are. This is because your rights are the same as the rights of everyone else–the right to shelter, equal employment, and public education for instance.
Because people with disabilities often find their rights infringed upon, extra protections are in place to protect your rights. These extra protections help people with disabilities live healthier, safer, more independent lives.
Your Legal Rights
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
In addition to the deeper human rights to which you are entitled, there are certain laws and legal protections put into place to protect people with disabilities. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), protects your rights to public accommodation, employment, government services (state and local), transportation, and telecommunications.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is an organization that enforces federal law against employment discrimination. These laws protect both existing employees and job applicants against discrimination based on any protected category (race, sex, religion, disability, age, etc.).
They also investigate and enforce cases of denial of reasonable workplace accommodations for people with disabilities. For instance, if your employer refuses to allow a flexible work schedule, change your job tasks, or provide reserved parking upon request, you may be able to report them to the EEOC.
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Disability Rights Arkansas
If you have questions about your rights as a person with a disability, or you’re experiencing discrimination and don’t know where to start, contact Disability Rights Arkansas today.