Brigid Ford worked as a Sheriff’s Deputy for 12 years when a car ran a red light and smashed into her patrol car. After a year of light-duty, her injuries mean she still couldn’t use her right hand totally and had ongoing pain. In other words, not the best condition for a police officer.
The Sheriff’s department offered her three choices:
1. A civilian job at a lower rate of pay with accommodations for her disability.
Ford chose the demotion and then sued, saying that it was a violation of the Americans with Disability Act (ADA). The 7th Circuit noted that this was a reasonable application of the law and that in this case, a demotion was a reasonable accommodation.
This is not a standard application
Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, you need to provide a reasonable accommodation for an employee, and to do that, you need to go through the “interactive process.” This means that you go back and forth until you come to a reasonable solution. In this case, Ford’s disability prevented her from doing the original job as a Sheriff’s Deputy even with accommodations.
To keep reading, click here: Court: Demoting a Disabled Employee Can Be a Reasonable Accommodation