Rachel Crasnow’s update on disability discrimination


Disability Discrimination update

Rachel Crasnow

Definition of disability:

1. Disability is defined in s. 6(1) of the EQA. A person (P) has a disability if

a. P has a mental or physical impairment and
b. The impairment has a substantial and long-term adverse effect upon P’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.

Substantial impairment

2. s. 212 now specifies that “substantial” in the Act means “more than minor or trivial”. Previously this interpretation was given only in the Guidance and in the Statutory Codes, but it will now apply wherever “substantial” is used in the Act.

3. In J v DLA Piper LLP the EAT gave tribunals some guidance on how best to determine whether a person has a substantial impairment. Although the tribunal should make separate findings about impairment and adverse effect,

“… the tribunal should not proceed by rigid consecutive stages. Specifically, in cases where there may be a dispute about the existence of an impairment it will make sense, for the reasons given in paragraph 38 above, to start by making findings about whether the claimant’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities is adversely affected (on a long-term basis), and to consider the question of impairment in the light of those findings”.

Download the full article here: rachel-crasnow-disability-march-2011.pdf

The accompanying slides can be found here: clt-disability-march-2011-slides-1.pdf.