masters level forum
This week’s lesson discussed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and its implications for businesses in making necessary accommodations for disabled people. However, there are currently several ongoing debates concerning whether certain conditions should be recognized as disabilities under the law. Consider and comment on the following questions:
1. Statistically, two in every three Americans are medically obese today. Should obesity be classified as a disability? What are the implications for businesses hiring obese employees under the ADA? Before you answer, though, consider a much more fundamental question: How do we (legally) define “obese”? What metric should be used? Some argue the Body Mass Index (BMI) is the medical gold standard, but consider that BMI is a far-from-perfect tool (see this article explaining how Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is considered “obese” under the BMI standard). What would you suggest as a solution to this apparent problem?
2. Should substance addiction be classified as a disability? If so, what threshold(s) should be used to substantiate an “addiction”? Does it depend on the kind of substance? For example, should addiction tocontrolled substances such as alcohol or tobacco be viewed differently under the law (for disability purposes) than addiction to illegal substances? What are the implications for for businesses hiring “addicts”?
500 word minimum