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  Oracle Tips by Burleson

ADA: Medical Examination and Inquiry

Medical examinations and inquiries are also included under the scrutiny of the ADA in regards to discriminatory practices against the disabled. Employers may engage in the following activities as they relate to disabled employees:

  • Notify managers and supervisors of work limitations and necessary accommodations.

  • Provide government officials who are investigating adherence to the ADA  with pertinent information as requested.

  • Notify health and safety staff of disabilities that may necessitate future emergency treatment.

  • Conduct voluntary medical examinations and histories that are integrated into an employee health program.

  • Inquire as to job-related abilities.

Medical examinations may not be required of employees nor inquiries made to determine the existence or severity of disabilities, unless such information acquired is job-related.


Many reasonable accommodations for employees with disabilities are inexpensive, such as designated vehicle parking space for a wheelchair-bound individual, or time off for medical treatment.

   - EEOC FY2002 Office of General Counsel Annual Report

There are provisions under the ADA that pertain to the illegal use of drugs and alcohol that allow employers to take the following actions:

  • Ban the use of illegal drugs and alcohol in the workplace.

  • Prohibit employees from working under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs.

  • Apply the same employment qualifications to employees abusing alcohol or illegal drugs as with all other employees. This rule is applicable even if the use of such substances directly impairs the performance or behavior of an individual.

  • Require employees to work within the provisions of the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988. This law requires Federal grantees and contractors to ensure a drug-free workplace. These regulations apply to employers who received Federal grants awarded or approved on or after March 18, 1989. The drug-free workplace certification is a requirement for receiving a Federal grant.

The Drug-Free Workplace Act  requires grantees to state in their personnel policies that the manufacture, distribution, possession or use of a controlled substance by employees in the grantee’s workplace is prohibited. The statement must specify the work location where the grant applies and the consequences to be imposed on employees who violate the grantee’s drug-free workplace policy.

Employers who receive the Federal grants (grantees) must establish a drug-free awareness program that highlights the dangers of drug use in the workplace, the grantee’s policy to ensure a drug-free work environment, and any programs to address drug rehabilitation and employee assistance. The drug-free workplace policy must be communicated to all employees engaged in the performance of the grant and provided notice that compliance with such policy is a precondition for employment under the grant.


All EEOC suits by discrimination bases have on average been resolved in the following percentages:

< Sex discrimination (30.2%)
< Retaliation (32.5%)
< Race (22.6%)
< Disability (17.7%)
< National Origin (7.8%)
< Age (7.0%)
< Religious (4.9%)

   - EEOC FY2002 Office of General Counsel Annual Report


The above book excerpt is from:

You're Fired! Firing Computer Professionals

The IT manager Guide for Terminating "With Cause"

ISBN 0-9744486-4-8

Robert Papaj

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