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. #331
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    If someone smokes pot over a long period of time and their memory fades, doe he recieve the same benefits as a man who knowingly drank alcohol and became an alcoholic?

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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wake View Post
    If someone smokes pot over a long period of time and their memory fades, doe he recieve the same benefits as a man who knowingly drank alcohol and became an alcoholic?
    Nope. everyone knows that pot smokers are evil!
    “In politics, stupidity is not a handicap.” -Napoleon

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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    I don't think I've weighed in on this yet, so here's my basic thinking (and I haven't read through the thread, so some of this may be repetitive):

    Alcoholism is a disease, and is, therefore, probably validly considered a disability generally. I've known a few serious alcoholics; one of my best friends manages an SRO in Portland, and he's told me some extremely horrifying stories about what prolonged alcoholism can do to a person. So there's that.

    On the other hand, the guy's a f-ing truck driver. I'm going to make an analogy to anti-discrimination laws. Generally speaking, employers aren't allowed to discriminate based on race, sex, age, etc. However, there are established, Constitutionally acceptable exceptions to such laws in situations where the nature of the employment demands some form of discrimination for practical reasons. For instance, a battered women's shelter probably wouldn't be required to accept a male janitor as an employee, because the nature of the work that they do demands a male-free environment.

    So if you apply that reasoning to this situation, I don't think it's remotely out of line for the company to refuse to allow this guy to continue driving trucks, because that's a dangerous activity in which one absolutely should not be drinking on the job (and don't even get me started on the liability issue). So for practical reasons, there should be exceptions to the ADA for situations like this one. However, the demotion might have been out of line and/or retaliatory in nature and is, therefore, potentially a legitimate problem.

  4. #334
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    These days, more and more irresponsible and/or deviate behaviors are considered a disability; that is unless doing so is considered politically incorrect. So why bother being responsible for anything? I have severe depression and anxiety problems. I must be disabled, too. Perhaps I am no longer responsible for my actions, either. Where's my tax payer subsidized check? Where's my protection from being fired? As I said, a disability can result from drinking, but I am still not convinced that drinking itself is a disability. I do agree that people with mental problems self medicate, so the most I will concede thus far is that alcoholism could be considered a co morbid disorder.
    “In politics, stupidity is not a handicap.” -Napoleon

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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wake View Post
    If someone smokes pot over a long period of time and their memory fades, doe he recieve the same benefits as a man who knowingly drank alcohol and became an alcoholic?
    AFAIK, marijuana use does not cause any impairment to long-term memory, but then again, I might have read that it does and forgot about it
    Last edited by sangha; 09-20-11 at 07:48 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by matchlight View Post
    Justice Thomas' opinions consistently contain precise, detailed constitutional analyses.
    Quote Originally Posted by jaeger19 View Post
    the vast majority of folks that need healthcare are on Medicare.. both rich and poor..

  6. #336
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Aderleth View Post
    I don't think I've weighed in on this yet, so here's my basic thinking (and I haven't read through the thread, so some of this may be repetitive):

    Alcoholism is a disease, and is, therefore, probably validly considered a disability generally. I've known a few serious alcoholics; one of my best friends manages an SRO in Portland, and he's told me some extremely horrifying stories about what prolonged alcoholism can do to a person. So there's that.

    On the other hand, the guy's a f-ing truck driver. I'm going to make an analogy to anti-discrimination laws. Generally speaking, employers aren't allowed to discriminate based on race, sex, age, etc. However, there are established, Constitutionally acceptable exceptions to such laws in situations where the nature of the employment demands some form of discrimination for practical reasons. For instance, a battered women's shelter probably wouldn't be required to accept a male janitor as an employee, because the nature of the work that they do demands a male-free environment.

    So if you apply that reasoning to this situation, I don't think it's remotely out of line for the company to refuse to allow this guy to continue driving trucks, because that's a dangerous activity in which one absolutely should not be drinking on the job (and don't even get me started on the liability issue). So for practical reasons, there should be exceptions to the ADA for situations like this one. However, the demotion might have been out of line and/or retaliatory in nature and is, therefore, potentially a legitimate problem.
    FYI: The ADA allows employers to re-assign employees for safety reasons. In this case, the issue is the demotion which, as you point out, could be potentially retaliatory or "out of line"
    Quote Originally Posted by matchlight View Post
    Justice Thomas' opinions consistently contain precise, detailed constitutional analyses.
    Quote Originally Posted by jaeger19 View Post
    the vast majority of folks that need healthcare are on Medicare.. both rich and poor..

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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by sangha View Post
    FYI: The ADA allows employers to re-assign employees for safety reasons. In this case, the issue is the demotion which, as you point out, could be potentially retaliatory or "out of line"
    I thought they did, but I wasn't sure. I never took employment law.

  8. #338
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by sangha View Post
    FYI: The ADA allows employers to re-assign employees for safety reasons. In this case, the issue is the demotion which, as you point out, could be potentially retaliatory or "out of line"
    So what would be the company's options? They can't fire the guy, and if they give him another position he doesn't like, he can bitch about it being "retaliatory."
    “In politics, stupidity is not a handicap.” -Napoleon

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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by sangha View Post
    AFAIK, marijuana use does not cause any impairment to long-term memory, but then again, I might have read that it does and forgot about it
    Based on my knowledge discoursing marijuana, it does impair the memory after long-term use. Tomorrow if I'm using my laptop I can post some links. Don't take my word for it.

  10. #340
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    Re: Is alcohol abuse a "disability"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wake View Post
    Based on my knowledge discoursing marijuana, it does impair the memory after long-term use. Tomorrow if I'm using my laptop I can post some links. Don't take my word for it.
    Someone would have to smoke a lot of weed for it to impair long term memory. It's extremely unlikely.
    “In politics, stupidity is not a handicap.” -Napoleon

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