Individuals with disabilities are protected from discrimination, harassment, and retaliation, as are members of other protected categories. Disabilities include physical and mental impairments and medical conditions that limit one or more of an individual's major life activities. Medical conditions are cancer and cancer-related conditions. Major life activities include breathing, eating, working, etc.
Disability discrimination claims differ from other forms of discrimination in three primary respects. First, disability discrimination laws not only protect individuals with actual disabilities, but also individuals regarded as having a disability and with a record of a disability. A record of disability occurs when an individual has a history of a disability that is not currently limiting major life activities or has been misclassified as having a disability. Being regarding as having a disability includes an individual being perceived has having a disability he does not have; having an impairment that does not limit major life activities, but being treated like he has an impairment that does limit major life activities; or having an impairment that limits major life activities only due to attitudes of others. The latter form of "regarded as having a disability" occurs, for example, if an employer refuses to hire someone because of a fear of the "negative reactions" of others to the individual.
Second, students and employees (including applicants) with disabilities are entitled to reasonable accommodations to perform the essential functions of their job or school. And, third, individuals with disabilities are entitled to "universal accessibility" in certain areas, e.g., architecture, communications, technology and transportation. Architectural accessibility includes such things as disabled parking, wheelchair ramps and disabled bathrooms. Communications accessibility includes such things as Braille signage, TTY phones and audible and visual alarm systems. Technology accessibility includes web sites that allow use of auxiliary devises such as ZoomText, Dictation Software and keyboard only commands. Transportation accessibility includes such things as wheelchair accessible buses, vocal as well as visual notice of destinations and disabled seating.
Reasonable accommodations often intersect with other employee benefits. For example, a person may be disabled as a result of a work-related injury. Therefore, the individual would not only be entitled to a reasonable accommodation under disability laws but also to job modification under Workers' Compensation laws. Or, an individual may be disabled and require a leave of absence, which can be a reasonable accommodation. That same leave of absence would also qualify as a medical leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act and the California Family Rights Act. And, that person would likely also be entitled to Non-Industrial Disability Leave and Catastrophic Leave. All these laws / policies have overlapping and conflicting provisions and therefore require careful coordination with Human Resources.
As with other forms of discrimination, complaints of disability discrimination, harassment and retaliation should be directed to the Director of Equity and Diversity. The Facilities, Procurement, Student Disability, Parking and IT departments work in conjunction with the Director of Equity and Diversity to address accessibility claims.
In addition, requests for reasonable accommodation by administrators, faculty, staff, and applicants for employment can be brought to the Director of Equity and Diversity. Requests for reasonable accommodation by students and applicants for admission should be brought to the Accessibility Services.
Finally, to address disability issues on the whole, CSUEB has a Disability Access and Compliance Committee that has representatives from faculty, staff, administrators and students from across the campus. This committee meets quarterly to discuss and address disability issues of CSUEB.