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An employer may not withdraw an offer from an applicant with a hearing impairment if the applicant is able to perform the essential functions of a job, with or without reasonable accommodation, without posing a direct threat (that is, a significant risk of substantial harm) to the health or safety of himself or others that cannot be eliminated or reduced through reasonable accommodation.
("Reasonable accommodation" is discussed in Questions 9 through 14.
After making a job offer, an employer may ask questions about the applicant's health (including questions about the applicant's disability) and may require a medical examination, as long as all applicants for the same type of job are treated equally (that is, all applicants are asked the same questions and are required to take the same examination).
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The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which was amended by the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 ("Amendments Act" or "ADAAA"), is a federal law that prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities.
Individuals with disabilities include those who have impairments that substantially limit a major life activity, have a record (or history) of a substantially limiting impairment, or are regarded as having a disability. Title I of the ADA covers employment by private employers with 15 or more employees as well as state and local government employers.
Some employers assume incorrectly that workers with hearing impairments will cause safety hazards, increase employment costs, or have difficulty communicating in fast-paced environments.
In reality, with or without reasonable accommodation, individuals with hearing impairments can be effective and safe workers.
In particular, this document explains: In 2011, a study led by researchers from Johns Hopkins reported that nearly 20% of Americans 12 and older have hearing loss so severe that it may make communication difficult. The study also found that 30 million Americans (12.7% of the population) had hearing loss in both ears while 48 million Americans (20.3% of the population) had hearing loss in one ear. According to 2010 data from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), approximately 17% of American adults (36 million people) report some degree of hearing loss. Of this group, 18% of American adults between the ages of 45 and 64 have experienced some degree of hearing loss. NIDCD estimates that approximately 15% of Americans between the ages of 20 and 69 (26 million people) have high frequency hearing loss due to exposure to loud sounds or noise at work or in leisure activities. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) refer to hearing impairments as conditions that affect the frequency and/or intensity of one's hearing. Although the term "deaf" is often mistakenly used to refer to all individuals with hearing difficulties, it actually describes a more limited group.
According to the CDC, "deaf" individuals do not hear well enough to rely on their hearing to process speech and language.
Finally, an individual is covered under the third ("regarded as") prong of the definition of disability if an employer takes a prohibited action (for example, refuses to hire or terminates the individual) because of a hearing impairment or because the employer believes the individual has a hearing impairment, other than an impairment that lasts fewer than six months and is minor.
Title I of the ADA limits an employer's ability to ask questions related to hearing and other disabilities and to conduct medical examinations at three stages: pre-offer, post-offer, and during employment. May an employer ask a job applicant whether he has or had a hearing impairment or about his treatment related to any hearing impairment prior to making a job offer? An employer may not ask questions about an applicant's medical condition or require an applicant to have a medical examination before it makes a conditional job offer. Does the ADA require an applicant to disclose that she has or had a hearing impairment or some other disability before accepting a job offer? The ADA does not require applicants to disclose that they have or had a hearing impairment or another disability they will need a reasonable accommodation for the application process (for example, a sign language interpreter).
However, if an applicant has an obvious impairment or has voluntarily disclosed the existence of a hearing impairment and the employer reasonably believes that he will require an accommodation to perform the job because of the impairment, the employer may ask whether the applicant will need an accommodation and what type.Tags: Adult Dating, affair dating, sex dating