Are we protected by ADA (Americans w/ Disabilities Act)?

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Cascadians
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06 Mar 2007, 3:20 pm

Is Asperger's considered a recognized disability? What type of "condition" is it?

What does one have to do to get an employer to stop discriminating?

I've been an employee since 1989 at an elder-care campus. Done an excellent job. Not one bad evaluation or anything negative in my file. My boss understands me and uses my expertise to the advantage of the whole place.

A couple years ago a new Executive Director (who is physically disabled) was hired, who in turn hired an utterly snotty young "assistant" to enable him to be absent most of the time. The assistant, his familiar, is a joke who can't think, read, or do anything. This snot took a dislike of me simply because her nasty radar perceived "different" and she's a bully. Now I'm practially banned from the workplace, because the ED says he's worried about "perceptions" and he's upset that I'm friends with my boss. This friendship has supported wonderful achievements for this workplace.

Not a word about substance or all the amazingly productive concrete things I've done for the place.

Only my boss knows I have a mild form of Asperger's (not diagnosed). I'm fed up with this crappy discriminatory treatment and would like to sue the hell out of the place if that will shut up the "perceptions" idiocy. Of course he's never defined the "perceptions" worry.

Is there an Asperger's card I can pull on this creep? He admits he knows nothing about me or my work or abilities or history or qualities, and doesn't care to know anything. How's that for idiotic ignorant discrimination?



MsTriste
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06 Mar 2007, 3:24 pm

Check out the EEOC - Equal Employment Opportunity Commission - they're on the web.
They are very helpful.
What you have is, I believe, a hostile work environment.

I too had an experience with a hostile work environment, and worked the problem out with the help of the EEOC.

Good luck.



ZanneMarie
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06 Mar 2007, 3:42 pm

Cascadians wrote:
Is Asperger's considered a recognized disability? What type of "condition" is it?

What does one have to do to get an employer to stop discriminating?

I've been an employee since 1989 at an elder-care campus. Done an excellent job. Not one bad evaluation or anything negative in my file. My boss understands me and uses my expertise to the advantage of the whole place.

A couple years ago a new Executive Director (who is physically disabled) was hired, who in turn hired an utterly snotty young "assistant" to enable him to be absent most of the time. The assistant, his familiar, is a joke who can't think, read, or do anything. This snot took a dislike of me simply because her nasty radar perceived "different" and she's a bully. Now I'm practially banned from the workplace, because the ED says he's worried about "perceptions" and he's upset that I'm friends with my boss. This friendship has supported wonderful achievements for this workplace.

Not a word about substance or all the amazingly productive concrete things I've done for the place.

Only my boss knows I have a mild form of Asperger's (not diagnosed). I'm fed up with this crappy discriminatory treatment and would like to sue the hell out of the place if that will shut up the "perceptions" idiocy. Of course he's never defined the "perceptions" worry.

Is there an Asperger's card I can pull on this creep? He admits he knows nothing about me or my work or abilities or history or qualities, and doesn't care to know anything. How's that for idiotic ignorant discrimination?


You can, but it will be harder without a diagnosis. Yes, the EEOC is the place to go for help. In the meantime, get an official diagnosis and take it to your boss. This ensures your rights because you have officially told your boss of your condition. Typically, if it is bullying behavior and the EEOC gets involved, it will stop immediately. These suits are costly for companies. No one should be placed in a hostile work environment. If those two don't know that already, the company's lawyers will be informing them shortly.

In the meantime, keep a log of every single incidence. Write down the date and time it happens and who said what. Note everything you can about the situation. Stay away from words like creep, snotty etc. Just state the facts. Keep that log with you at all times and never leave it at work. Do not put it on your computer. If you remember incidents from the past along with their dates, make a log of those as well. Also, note the names of any other people around, including within hearing distance. Make sure they are actually there at the time. These are your witnesses.

Write down all of your achievements with their dates and if they were recognized by your boss.

When you go to the EEOC, take it all with you. The more you have, the stronger your case and the faster they will back off. Under no circumstances do you talk to your boss or anyone in the company about what is going on once you make the initial complaint. Any further contact should be in writing. Verbal conversations can be denied, but it's hard to deny what is in writing. If you send yoru boss any emails regarding these incidents, send a copy to your home email account and put it right in the cc: line. You want to let them know right up front that you are serious. Do not mess around. Most situations escalate because people do not think action will be taken.

Most of all, toe the line at work. Don't let these two make you do things you know you shouldn't. Perform your job perfectly as you did before this situation. Do not give them any ammunition.

If you file a complaint with the EEOC and they take any action against you at all, go back to the EEOC and file a complaint for retaliation. Courts really frown on that now days, so do not put up with it at all. Remember, record everything. If you can write it down word for word, that is the best thing. If you can't, get as close as you can.

No matter what, do not engage in any verbal confrontations with these two. Ignore them as much as possible.

That's about all I can think of at the moment. Hope that helps!



Cascadians
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06 Mar 2007, 3:53 pm

Thank you both! I just studied

http://www.eeoc.gov/abouteeo/overview_practices.html
Discriminatory Practices

and it seems clear as a bell that this hostility is unmerited and illegal.

I've kept a log, thanks. Your advice is much appreciated. I've always been extraordinarily kind and helpful, yet lately have a burning temptation to fillet the imbeciles who have made it impossible for me to go to work. So I will take the safe route, your advice, ignore them and hold my tongue. I'd like to finally use my latent Asperger's powers, wield my formidable precise logical straight-on intelligence and skewer the cruelty of these obstacle people in public, but I won't. My boss is willing to sue with me; she is horrified at the blatant inexplicable hostility which is now impacting her ability to get her work done too.

This forum is great! Just found it yesterday. All my life I've known I landed on the wrong planet in some drastic mistake. Reading threads here is revelation! God bless you all.



tyciol
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06 Mar 2007, 4:38 pm

It's a tricky sort. Since Aspergers affects your personality so much, and personality is an aspect of what employers consider, in some cases, it wouldn't be reasonable to protect you. Such as in cases of Customer Service or wherever where it's essential to doing your job properly.

On the other hand, if you're doing coding and just don't get along with other employees, I'm sure you deserve some degree of protection as long as it's more independant work and not collaboration.



Cascadians
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06 Mar 2007, 4:59 pm

Well, there's never been a complaint about my interactions with other workers or patients. There were attacks a couple years ago, with a group of employees making up lies. Each one of these employees were later fired for substantiated wrongdoings, such as stealing (recorded on videocam), drug theft, mental breakdown - going ballistic at work, wrongly suing the company with false allegations, etc. These bad employees "picked" on me because they thought I was an easy target and they were all jostling for position, which I don't do. Their behavior outted the real them with a little time.

But now there's no complaint about my work or personality, just some vague "perception" nebulous thing the director (who's hardly ever there) keeps threatening my boss with, saying I shouldn't be there because she's my friend and they have to be careful of "perceptions." She is my friend because of the high quality of work I do, my cheerful disposition, and the help I've given her since 1989.

We're talking 1000s of documents I've written, very substantial evidence of my qualifications and work.

I can't think of other discriminations except maybe sexual, as in, this idiot director who's never there is worried because I'm a woman and my boss is a woman? No we are not gay. Or is it religion? It's a former convent turned into a continuing care retirement center. Or is it age? No, the whole place is about age ... it's about his snot who doesn't like me, who can tell there's something different but doesn't know what and so they're fishing for some excuse to exclude me.

And I've had zero privileges there. I worked there with my husband for years as a 2-for-1 team, then volunteered (no pay even!) for 9 months starting a new program, and now my boss has asked me to sit on a subcommittee for architectural design to give valuable input for new buildings. The director is freaking, saying I shouldn't be allowed to be there because I'm friends with my boss, who is the one actually running the place, superbly, because the director is dysfunctional and hardly ever there.

Where should I go to get a formal official diagnosis of Asperger's ? [u]



Mnemosyne
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06 Mar 2007, 6:26 pm

Yes, Asperger's is covered under the ADA, however you will need a formal diagnosis. You need a doctor to request accommodations for you though.

To get an evaluation, you can find a doctor through the Autism Society of America. You can find your local chapter via this website:
http://209.200.89.252/search_site/chapter_map.cfm

Once you find your local chapter, get in touch with them and they can help you find a non-idiot doctor.



Cascadians
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06 Mar 2007, 7:48 pm

Thank you Mnemosyne :D

Left a message on their voice mail. Their office is on same campus as my workplace! How's that for irony?

What type of tests does the diagnosis involve?
Are there any downsides to being formally diagnosed?

It would be weird to be "labeled" but I'm just so disgusted at the moment that I want to use this as a tool for some leverage. Also planning to develop Aspie strengths to be impervious to NT's cruelty. I've been lucky not particularly caring what other's think, just focusing on work, work, work, but when little cowardly piddly low-life scum try to impede work, watch out.

Hope this whole diagnosis process isn't too expensive ...



MsTriste
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06 Mar 2007, 8:38 pm

Cascadians: Please check your private messages

I have been where you are now. You DO NOT NEED a formal diagnosis. You DO NEED to contact the EEOC immediately.



jimservo
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06 Mar 2007, 8:45 pm

From what I understand disability law has less to do with specific conditions and more to do with the limitations those conditions have upon you.

ADDENDUM: Later this month I have a meeting with SSI.



ZanneMarie
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06 Mar 2007, 9:17 pm

Cascadians wrote:
Thank you both! I just studied

http://www.eeoc.gov/abouteeo/overview_practices.html
Discriminatory Practices

and it seems clear as a bell that this hostility is unmerited and illegal.

I've kept a log, thanks. Your advice is much appreciated. I've always been extraordinarily kind and helpful, yet lately have a burning temptation to fillet the imbeciles who have made it impossible for me to go to work. So I will take the safe route, your advice, ignore them and hold my tongue. I'd like to finally use my latent Asperger's powers, wield my formidable precise logical straight-on intelligence and skewer the cruelty of these obstacle people in public, but I won't. My boss is willing to sue with me; she is horrified at the blatant inexplicable hostility which is now impacting her ability to get her work done too.

This forum is great! Just found it yesterday. All my life I've known I landed on the wrong planet in some drastic mistake. Reading threads here is revelation! God bless you all.


Your boss needs to tell them directly that he or she will sue with you. I had an employee with MS and my company tried some crap. I told them they wouldn't have to worry about her suing them because I would. They backed right off. If you boss will testify for you they are sunk and they will know that. That was exactly why I told my company that. Every year we had the lawyers in to lecture us as managers. I've told you ever thing they told us to watch for. Just hold your cool and keep the log. Note even the details of what they were wearing. Corporate lawyers will try to use your disability against you to try to prove you don't remember what you do, so you put in every detail imaginable and it will stand up.



ZanneMarie
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06 Mar 2007, 9:19 pm

tyciol wrote:
It's a tricky sort. Since Aspergers affects your personality so much, and personality is an aspect of what employers consider, in some cases, it wouldn't be reasonable to protect you. Such as in cases of Customer Service or wherever where it's essential to doing your job properly.

On the other hand, if you're doing coding and just don't get along with other employees, I'm sure you deserve some degree of protection as long as it's more independant work and not collaboration.


The law doesn't look at it that way. If the person has been in the job for awhile with satisfactory reviews, the employer has no leg to stand on.

We once had bank customers upset because two tellers were mennonites. They didn't like the way they dressed. It didn't make any difference. We were not allowed to say a word. If you've been hired into that position and you've had nothing but good reviews, it pretty much takes a drastic situation before they'll even consider it.



ZanneMarie
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06 Mar 2007, 9:22 pm

Cascadians wrote:
Well, there's never been a complaint about my interactions with other workers or patients. There were attacks a couple years ago, with a group of employees making up lies. Each one of these employees were later fired for substantiated wrongdoings, such as stealing (recorded on videocam), drug theft, mental breakdown - going ballistic at work, wrongly suing the company with false allegations, etc. These bad employees "picked" on me because they thought I was an easy target and they were all jostling for position, which I don't do. Their behavior outted the real them with a little time.

But now there's no complaint about my work or personality, just some vague "perception" nebulous thing the director (who's hardly ever there) keeps threatening my boss with, saying I shouldn't be there because she's my friend and they have to be careful of "perceptions." She is my friend because of the high quality of work I do, my cheerful disposition, and the help I've given her since 1989.

We're talking 1000s of documents I've written, very substantial evidence of my qualifications and work.

I can't think of other discriminations except maybe sexual, as in, this idiot director who's never there is worried because I'm a woman and my boss is a woman? No we are not gay. Or is it religion? It's a former convent turned into a continuing care retirement center. Or is it age? No, the whole place is about age ... it's about his snot who doesn't like me, who can tell there's something different but doesn't know what and so they're fishing for some excuse to exclude me.

And I've had zero privileges there. I worked there with my husband for years as a 2-for-1 team, then volunteered (no pay even!) for 9 months starting a new program, and now my boss has asked me to sit on a subcommittee for architectural design to give valuable input for new buildings. The director is freaking, saying I shouldn't be allowed to be there because I'm friends with my boss, who is the one actually running the place, superbly, because the director is dysfunctional and hardly ever there.

Where should I go to get a formal official diagnosis of Asperger's ? [u]


Go to google and look up Asperger's diagnosis <name of state>. That's how I found a contact and got some names of doctors to do the diagnosis.



ZanneMarie
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06 Mar 2007, 9:24 pm

aylissa wrote:
Cascadians: Please check your private messages

I have been where you are now. You DO NOT NEED a formal diagnosis. You DO NEED to contact the EEOC immediately.


Yes, the accomodations do not apply to hostile work environment. This is a different situation. A formal diagnosis will help make it easier, but don't wait. Call the EEOC to file a complaint.



Cascadians
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06 Mar 2007, 9:41 pm

Thank you Aylissa, very much, for your encouragement and message. I most definitely will be contacting the EEOC tomorrow.

JimServo, I'm not sure what limitations Asperer's puts on me except a blithe insubservience to the social heirarchy, the ferocious pecking order that drives NT's behaviors. I just do my work and speak the truth, write the truth, live the truth. That makes me different and certain ppl cannot stand any difference and attack.

So basically Asperger's makes me a target of snobs, snots, and rigid autocratic power mongers who feel threatened by anybody free and happy and loving. I'm in no way trying to hurt or threaten them by being my carefree hard-working free spirit Self, but they go ballistic.

I am a walking lightning rod that reveals the lurking evil in other people. I am a barometer of how much undercurrent of manipulation and machination is in others in the room. They cannot resist attacking, smirking, whispering, gossiping, and scheming behind my back. For the last 2 years they have taken this behavior and pulled the same heinous traitorous monstrosities on my boss, going behind her back. She is not amused, is a powerful leader, and has seen the bald raw facts and knows it's not my imagination (she had a trouble believing it before because these bad people certainly were not behaving this way to her face).

The devil usually outs himself and self-destructs :)

Asperger's puts no limitations on me other than the fear of driving a car, but it puts limitations on my ability to work because it draws hatred from the most insecure problem-ridden evil NT's who cannot help spazzing out at my mere presence; my very existence sends them into tirades and schemes.