View Poll Results: Is alcohol abuse a disability; do you agree or disagree with the EEOC?

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  • I agree alcohol abuse is a disability, I agree with the EEOC position

    4 9.09%
  • I agree alcohol abuse is a disability, I disagree with the EEOC position

    3 6.82%
  • I disagree that alcohol abuse is a disability, I agree with the EEOC position

    2 4.55%
  • I disagree that alcohol abuse is a disability, I disagree with the EEOC position

    25 56.82%
  • Rutabega

    3 6.82%
  • Other (Explain please)

    7 15.91%
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Thread: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

  1. #101
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by evanescence View Post
    Predisposition to addiction does exist, but it doesn't excuse one's actions. For example, some people are predisposed to mental problems. That doesn't exclude them from the responsibility of helping themselves.
    Which is why it is illegal to fire someone based on their potential to do wrong in the future. One's job should be determined based on performance balanced by a need to protect the publics safety. The driver in this case had not done anything wrong. In fact, there's been no evidence posted that indicates that he ever drove drunk or impaired in any way and he is seeking help.
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  2. #102
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by evanescence View Post
    Predisposition to addiction does exist, but it doesn't excuse one's actions. For example, some people are predisposed to mental problems. That doesn't exclude them from the responsibility of helping themselves.
    I agree, with exception to predisposition not existing - many people get sober and function just fine however.
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  3. #103
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by digsbe View Post
    As a medical scientist I think that's a cop out opinion. Can you state why alcohol abuse is a disability?
    Because it can be treated and cured with reasonable medical intervention.
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  4. #104
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by sangha View Post
    Addiction is a physiological condition. Science has shown that addiction causes changes in the chemistry and structures of the brain
    Addiction is self inflicted the vast majority of the time. This is not a disability. Addiction gives someone a craving or withdrawal symptoms, but it never forces someone to drink alcohol. The root of it is choice, not some disability that you are smitten with against your will.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paschendale View Post
    Because it can be treated and cured with reasonable medical intervention.
    That doesn't make it a disability. The "cure" lies in personal responsibility and actions, not in medications. There are medications to help with alcohol withdrawal symptoms, but they don't cure a behavioral problem.
    Last edited by digsbe; 09-04-11 at 01:51 PM.
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  5. #105
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by sangha View Post
    That's why employers are not allowed to fire addicts. Your argument is based on the fallacy that the person can be fired. And the fact that many addicts have sought treatment at great cost to themselves indicates that addicts will seek treatment even if it costs them
    I'm arguing that even reassigning the dude to a job that has a lower pay grade is a bad idea.
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  6. #106
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by sangha View Post
    Which is why it is illegal to fire someone based on their potential to do wrong in the future. One's job should be determined based on performance balanced by a need to protect the publics safety. The driver in this case had not done anything wrong. In fact, there's been no evidence posted that indicates that he ever drove drunk or impaired in any way and he is seeking help.
    And yet I still support this company's decision. Why take the chance at a loss of life? I have nightmares about my family dying in a horrific accident. And nightmares of what I would do to those responsible.
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  7. #107
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by digsbe View Post
    That doesn't make it a disability. The "cure" lies in personal responsibility and actions, not in medications. There are medications to help with alcohol withdrawal symptoms, but they don't cure a behavioral problem.
    Cures and treatment are not always drugs. What is AA if not a socially based treatment? It uses peer pressure to create a stronger compulsion than the drinking. The same is true in rehab.
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  8. #108
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paschendale View Post
    Cures and treatment are not always drugs. What is AA if not a socially based treatment? It uses peer pressure to create a stronger compulsion than the drinking. The same is true in rehab.
    "Socially-based" isn't medicine though, as you said, it's peer-pressure. You don't need to belong to a group like AA to use peer-pressure. The reality is in this situation, being an alcoholic is unacceptable to the employer. I doubt this changed from the day said individual was hired. It was unacceptable on day one, it is still unacceptable on day whatever. Therefore it was up to the individual, knowing this, to stop being an alcoholic from day one. He didn't. Thus whose fault is it and why is it now incumbent on the employer to take up the slack for the employee's failure to solve his own problems in the first place?
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  9. #109
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    I liked reading everyone's discussion of the issue and many good points made.

    Ockham ... I looked at the case from the source ... and my point about Fox news using this case as thinly veiled story and opening it with "Obama is suing private company" was journalism malpractice as best. Why not use the source itself instead of an infotainment sources that adds absurd statements to manipulate their uneducated viewers that obama was going to tell them what to do ... in this case ... the people appointed when the law was enacted were appointed by Bush. Be clear though ... I am not pulling a Fox News stunt. I am simply pointing out their tactics that are a directive by the network to the people presenting. They are to directed to report events many can agree with and insert "obama caused this" into in order to get mindset of manipulation.

    Alcoholism is a recognized disability under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), and disability discrimination violates this federal law. The EEOC said that the company violated both the ADA and the Americans With Disabilities Act Amendment Act of 2008 (ADAAA) by conditioning reassignment to non-driving positions on the enrollment in an alcohol treatment program. In addition, the EEOC argued that Old Dominion’s policy that bans any driver who self-reports alcohol abuse from ever driving again also violates the ADA.
    http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/8-16-11d.cfm

    This is a fascinating case ... in two respects.

    The first is the circumstances of the case and the self reporting driver and should he protected under the law? I could make a fair case either way ... yet I am leaning towards the employer should be able to make this call.

    Next, that Fox news reports the story of this case decided on a 2008 law with appointees of the previous administration and opens their story with Obama sues! ... this leads me to beieve it is thinly veiled story as Fox had directive to presenters of stories to use Obama as the core fault on issues unrelated.

    Suggestion ... why use a known tabloid infotainment station geared towards a 6th grade educated mind they can manipulate ... that takes stories with threads of truth and inserts semantics to skew the reality of the issue being discussed.

    I linked the actual case ... including the year this act was put in place.
    Last edited by Turin; 09-04-11 at 02:53 PM.

  10. #110
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    To argue that government agencies don't change their tactics because on the administration in power is a fallacious arguement. Of course they do. I've not searched to see if the current administration has had any input here but administrations certainly do have an impact of what will be addressed and how it will be.

    Nobody would argue that INS doesn't act differently under Obama than they would under say, Ron Paul.

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