Elizabeth C. Haynes, Senior Technical Writer /Linked In
Disability discrimination (or age discrimination, or sexism). Let’s talk about it. Have you experienced it?
I have lost more than one job opportunity in the last few months because I need an ADA accommodation. I’ve been advised to hide it, to lie, to wait until the written offer comes and then negotiate. I’ve tried to do this and it’s just not me.
I don’t like that I can’t be myself and be honest about my needs when I’m searching for a job. I shouldn’t have to worry that an opportunity will be yanked away from me as soon as I say I need an accommodation. Or that an interview will be cancelled. Or that a verbal offer will evaporate and never transform into anything written.
I can do the essential functions of any job I apply for. In fact, I don’t apply for jobs I don’t feel that I can do.
I’d not had to deal with this sort of discrimination until I gave up my own company and started seeking employment with someone else. It’s not right and it’s not fair.
But you know what? I’m going to keep being honest – maybe not right at the beginning anymore, but I’m not going to be anyone but who I am.
I am a really awesome professional, a good person, a hard worker, AND I have a medical condition. One day someone will see what I have to offer, and I’m going to wait for that company.