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DISABILITY DISCRIMINATION AT THE STATE DEPARTMENT

You may have a case involving unlawful discrimination if you believe you were denied hire to the State Department, or are being treated unfairly at the State Department, based on your disability, perceived disability, or record of a disability. These are all protected classifications under the Federal statute that protects Federal employees with disabilities, the Rehabilitation Act.

The State Department's "worldwide availability" requirement has required applicants for employment to prove they could work at any State Department facility in the world without any kind of reasonable accommodation. If you were denied hire within the last 45 days based on "worldwide availability," file an EEO complaint and contact Bryan Schwartz immediately.

If you believe you were denied a promotion or other career opportunity because of your disability, record of a disability, or perceived disability, within the last 45 days, you should also file an EEO complaint and contact Bryan Schwartz immediately. In order to prove discrimination, you need not have direct evidence of discrimination – rare in today's workplaces. Generally, you may prove discrimination by creating an inference of discrimination. To do so, you must show that you are similarly-situated to another employee who was treated more favorably than you were treated. So, for example, imagine you and another individual applied for State Department posts, and you were more qualified, but the other individual – not disabled, or perceived as disabled, or with a record of a disability – was selected. In that case, you could prove discrimination if the employer could not articulate a legitimate, non-discriminatory reason for hiring the other person, or if you could show that the employer's stated reason for not hiring you was false.

If you were kept from a prestigious assignment because of a seemingly-neutral policy (like "worldwide availability"), but which actually disproportionately impacts many State Department employees, within the last 45 days, you may also have a case, and you should also file an EEO complaint and contact Bryan Schwartz immediately.

If you suffered any disability discrimination based upon a State Department practice more than 45 days ago, you may also contact us. Your claims may fall within the class period in the case being litigated by Bryan Schwartz Law and Passman & Kaplan. Please contact Bryan Schwartz if you believe you were subjected to any of these types of job discrimination and you need a lawyer's advice.

REASONABLE ACCOMMODATION

If you suffer from an impairment which substantially limits you in one or more major life activities (some examples are seeing, hearing, walking, breathing, eating, social interaction, taking care of yourself, and having children), then you may be entitled to a reasonable accommodation in your workplace. In general, you must be able to perform the essential functions of your job – with or without a reasonable accommodation. So, if you need help to perform these functions, you should request an accommodation. The accommodation you need must not pose an undue hardship for the employer – for example, if you are a receptionist or interview visa applicants, and an essential function of your job is to meet with visitors at your workplace, you probably cannot be accommodated by asking to spend most of the work week working from home. On the other hand, if you perform most of your work from your office on your phone and computer, then working from home, or with modified work hours, as an accommodation might be reasonable.

If you need to visit a medical specialist who is not convenient to your post, it may be that the State Department is required to accommodate you in permitting such visits.

If you have been denied a reasonable accommodation within the last 45 days, you should also file an EEO complaint and contact Bryan Schwartz immediately.

Please contact Bryan Schwartz if you believe you have been denied a reasonable accommodation, or you need a lawyer's advice in requesting one from your employer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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BRYAN SCHWARTZ LAW

1330 Broadway, Suite 1630 • Oakland, CA 94612
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