Are you familiar with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the ADA benefits that exist for senior citizens? Find out how ADA benefits can help you in this latest Audicus blog!
The ADA, or Americans with Disabilities Act, can be a fundamental resource for people that use hearing aids. The act ensures that senior citizens, baby boomers and other groups of individuals that are normally prone to instances of hearing loss are eligible for the benefits the program offers.
The ADA and Hearing Aids
Founded in 1990, the ADA was created to prevent discrimination and encourage equal opportunity for people with disabilities. This program comes equipped with a certain set of parameters, or ADA benefits, for employers with regards to hiring, maintaining and firing employees who may or may not have hearing loss.
For example, an employer is not legally allowed to ask an employer about her hearing condition before making a job offer. More specifically, the employer can’t ask if she has had hearing-related surgery, if she currently uses a hearing aid, or if she has a medical condition which might have resulted in hearing loss.
There is a certain set of questions that employers can ask, however, as it pertains to an individual’s work performance. An employer is allowed to ask if the job applicant can function quickly and efficiently in an environment that is very loud. An employer is also able to ask a job applicant if she is able to communicate effectively and if her work performance meets the safety standards of the job in question.
Also, the duty falls on a job applicant to disclose any hearing loss issues if they need some kind of accommodation during the process of application. If a job applicant discloses that she has hearing loss during the application process, the employer is allowed to ask her if she will need certain accommodations if the employer believes it will be necessary for the prospective employee to perform the job.
However, an employee, once hired, is able to request special accommodations in her working conditions even if she did not disclose she has hearing loss during the time of the application process.
Hearing Aid Appointments
If you are taking a sick leave from work to get your hearing aids adjusted, you are also protected with ADA benefits from having to disclose certain degrees of information about your visit. For example, your employer does have a right to request a valid doctor’s note, but the employer does not have a right to know the extent of your hearing loss, the type of hearing aid that you use or the results of the visit
If you suspect that your rights are being violated on account of a disability, feel free to contact the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission at 1-800-669-4000. If you would like the conversation to be typed (TTY), call 1-800-669-6820 or call 1-844-234-5122 if you would like to communicate through ASL Video Phone.
By: Aaron Rodriques