About 16% of workers in Indiana report having a mental health challenge that can affect their work performance. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) protects these workers and says they can receive special accommodations when needed to complete their work assignments.
MENTAL HEALTH CONDITIONS COVERED UNDER ADA
There is no list of mental health conditions listed in the ADA. Instead, the law defines covered employees as those with a physical or mental health condition that substantially limits one or more major life activities. The person who is asking for accommodation must be able to prove that they have a history of the condition.
WHAT ACCOMMODATIONS CAN EMPLOYERS PROVIDE
The type of accommodation that an employer provides depends on the individual and what their mental health condition requires. For example, a person who is clinically depressed may need a more flexible schedule to take medication throughout the day. They may also need time off to see medical providers. Some depressed people do their best work remotely. When considering accommodations, think about offering accommodations to help the individual in these areas:
- Controlling emotions
- Decreasing fatigue
- Time management
- Organizational skills
- Sleeping and staying awake
- Stress alleviation
HOW CAN EMPLOYERS HELP DEPRESSED EMPLOYEES?
Since about one in five of your employees may be dealing with depression or another mental illness, it is wise to consider how to accommodate these individuals better in the workplace, or they may persecute you. Be open-minded so employees feel comfortable telling you what they need. Empower your managers to have these discussions with workers. Ensure that bullying and harassment have no place in your business, and putting an end to them will help stop discrimination.
If you are an employer in Indiana, you must provide reasonable accommodations to your clinically depressed workers under the ADA law. Talking to employees about how you can make their job more accessible is a great place to start.