3H HIV/AIDS as a Disability
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) provides protections against discrimination for people with disabilities (PWDs.) If a person living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA), either symptomatic, has physical impairments that substantially limit one or more major life activities or major bodily functions, they meet the criteria of a PWD and are thusly protected by the ADA (U.S. DOH, 2012). PLWHA are often discounted as needing and/or being eligible for supports such as work accommodations, vocational rehabilitation, and disability insurance. This is further compounded by the phenomenon of AIDS-stigma, “the social devaluing of people perceived to have AIDS or HIV as well as the individuals, groups, and communities with which they are associated” (Herek, Widman & Capitanio 2005). The presenters will provide data associated with guidance for employees, employers, and service providers to include pivotal discrimination-based legal cases and current demographic trends of PSWHA in the United States.