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Can workplace bullying count as disability discrimination?

On Behalf of | Apr 15, 2016 | Workplace Discrimination |

It is a sad fact that in many cases, bullying continues past the school years. Some people never grow out of the need to humiliate and demean others. If you or someone you know is disabled and the subject of being bullied at work, you may take heart in knowing that such action is prohibited by law. Workplace bullying can be considered a form of harassment or discrimination in Minnesota.

The Americans with Disabilities Act protects those with disabilities from many types of negative treatment, according to the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. You may be able to perform your job just as well as one who is not disabled, but unfortunately, some able-bodied people seem to relish the opportunity to make a disabled co-worker’s life miserable.

Disability bullying goes beyond good-natured teasing. A workplace bully might make subtle or overt comments to your other co-workers or directly to your face. Your employer might purposefully pass you up for advancements or transfers to a better department despite knowing you are capable and qualified for the job. You may find yourself facing a layoff, demotion, wage cut or firing for no other reason than that you were targeted because of your disability.

You have the right to be treated with respect and dignity on the job like everyone else. When your co-workers or employers are not sensitive to the feelings of those with disabilities or take pleasure in bullying others, disability laws should protect you from being mistreated at work. This information is meant to give you a general idea on harassment and discrimination laws, but should not replace the advice of a lawyer.



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