Disability Discrimination Act
The Disability Discrimination Act makes it unlawful to discriminate against people in respect to their disabilities in connection to employment, education, provision of goods and services, and transport. In the late twentieth and early twenty-first century, several countries have passed laws focused at reducing unjust discrimination against people with disabilities, these laws started to appear as the concept of civil rights which has become more significant globally, which is incredibly relevant with everything going on in today’s world. The law follows other forms of anti-discrimination and equal opportunity legislation intended at preventing racial discrimination and sexism which started to surface in the second half of the twentieth century.
A UK parliamentary act of 1995 on Disability Discrimination departs from fundamental principles of older UK Discrimination Law such as Sex Discrimination Act 1975 and the Race Relations Act 1976. The core concepts of the UK Disability Discrimination Act are: less favorable treatment for reasons related to a disabled person’s disability; and the failure to make a reasonable adjustment.
Reasonable adjustment is the radical perception that makes the UK Disability Discrimination Act very different from the older legislation. This idea focuses more on an active approach that employers, service providers, and others to take strides to remove barriers from the participation of disabled people, such as employers providing accessible IT equipment, or shops making their premises accessible to wheelchair users.
The Codes of Practice of the Disability Rights Commission give more information to organizations with duties on assessing whether a certain adjustment is reasonable. Generally, the factors to consider include: whether the planned adjustment would meet the needs of the disabled person; whether the adjustment is affordable; and whether the adjustment would have a severe effect on other people.
Occasionally, there may be no reasonable adjustment and the outcome is a less favorable treatment for the disabled person such as a person did not understand the implications of entering a loan or mortgage agreement and did not have anyone authorized to act for them, it would be senseless for a bank or building society to enter into the agreement. Consequently, the Act permits service providers and employers to justify less favorable treatment and in some cases failure to make reasonable adjustment in particular situations.
There is no doubt that the general public can make a true difference in the lives of disabled people, many of the services given by the public sector are of serious importance to disabled and many of these services are only provided by the public sector. Through leading the way in guaranteeing fair treatment to people with disabilities, the public can make a big difference to enhance a better way of living for disabled people. The Disability Discrimination Act ensures all the activities by the public sector and introduces a new positive duty on the public’s part to eliminate discrimination and harassment of people with disabilities as well as promote equality of opportunity for them.