Thank you. Good afternoon for those of you that are in that time zone and good morning for those of you not in the afternoon mode of your day. I would like to thank everyone for joining us today. I know that there is people across the country that are chilly, and hopefully you are warm where you are today with this session. Those of you that are enjoying good weather, you can laugh at all of us that are in the cold. Today''s session is part our regularly scheduled sessions. This is our January session. For those of you that you may not have been with us in the past, we have done a session similar to this back in 2003. This session is primarily a question and answer session. It will not have a formalized presentation, per se, by our presenter, but instead, it is really going to be driven by you, the participants, as you ask questions today on the topic that we are featuring, it is obviously employment issues and Americans with Disabilities Act. We are welcoming today, Sharon Rennert who has been with us in the past and who is well known to many within the disability business technical assistance arena as well as many of you who may be involved in other aspects of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) training and technical assistance efforts. Sharon is a senior attorney with the ADA division of the equal employment opportunity commission. She has been with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) since 1992. And so like many of us she has been working and doing this for a very long time. As I noted earlier, this is part of our regularly scheduled sessions. Our audio conference series, of which we have 12 sessions offered, one per month, beginning from October through September. These are hosted as a collective effort of the disability and business technical assistance centers, which for some of you may be referred to as ADA and accessible Information Technology (IT) centers, as we have all expanded our mission to involve issues related to information technology and how it is accessed by people with disabilities, primarily in the educational arena but we don''t ignore it, as it very much a part of all of our arenas, whether it is employment, public services or part of our public accommodations. This session today is 90 minutes in length. As I indicated earlier it primarily will be driven by you, the audience and the questions that you ask our speaker. We will be moderating this session to assure that everyone has an opportunity to ask questions. We do ask that you minimize questions that are about you or a specific situation, as they are very difficult for our speaker to be able to answer in this kind of venue. We will try to direct you to appropriate sources if that would be the case. But we are looking for and asking primarily for you to ask questions that are about situations and things, but will not able to answer individual questions today in this format about one particular circumstance with an individual who may be in an individual in an employment situation. In that regard. In the format that we are offering today, we are offering it in real time captioning on the Internet. For those of you that are interested in that, accessing that, you can go to ADA Great Lakes, all one word,.org and follow links to the real time text captioning. The captioning program will allow you to save a transcript of today''s session directly to your hard drive or to your computer. Note this will be an unedited transcript. Our office will edit the transcript and post it back onto our website for those of you that are interested in coming back to this session. We also have a digital recording of this session, which we will make available on our website as well so that individuals who want to come back and listen to it will be able to do that. So to repeat that is www.adagreatlakes.org . You can also follow up on this situation if you don''t get the link or have difficulty with your local disability and business technical assistance center as they will assist you in getting that information as well. So to take up anymore time in our session, I will turn it over right now to our speaker, Sharon Rennert, and she will be spend a few minutes with talking about some updates with the EEOC, and know some of you are also interested in some of the supreme court cases and how they effect. She will take a few minutes right now to address those issues before go over to the questions and answers. So at this point, I will turn the microphone over to Sharon.
Thank you, Robin, and good afternoon. I''m just going to assume there are a whole bunch of people out there rather than I''m just having a private conversation with Robin, which is always lovely, but hopefully there are many more people out there and I will find out in just a few minutes when it is your turn to ask questions. Let me take just a few minutes to give you an update. For those of you who may not have visited the EEOC website recently, we have redesigned it and in large part, because of comments from people who thought that there might be easier ways to access information on our website, and I know over the years, I''ve gotten some of those questions on these kinds of audio conferences. So if you have not gone to our website, when you go on the home page now, there is a new category offering people information by the type of discrimination that they are interested in, so one of the categories is disability discrimination. You click on it. You will get a kind of thumbnail introduction to Title I of the ADA, the employment discrimination provisions, and then you will be given all kinds of options to see the statute, to see the regulations, to see all of the EEOC enforcement guidance''s and fact sheets that we have done on ADA-related topics. So hopefully this format is more user friendly, gets you to the information that you are looking for. We do continue to welcome feedback. If you still have things that you find it difficult to locate on our website, by all means, either directly through me or through any of the DBTACs, we would be interested in any comments. Also, we have started a series of fact sheets on specific disabilities. The first one was Diabetes and the ADA. It was issued the last October. It is on the website, if you have not seen it. It is the first in an occasional series of fact sheets we will do highlighting some issues specific to particular disabilities and we are discussing right now in office what the next disability will be, so I can''t tell you that or when the fact sheet will come out, but just to draw your attention to the fact sheet on Diabetes and the ADA. As Robin mentioned, the Supreme Court this year has continued its look at the ADA and has issued a decision involving the employment provisions of the ADA, a case called Raytheon versus Hernandez. Let me take just a few minutes to kind of review what that case was about and what the supreme court said here. Raytheon versus Hernandez began back in 1991 when Mr. Hernandez worked for Hughes Missile Systems eventually Hughes was bought by Raytheon and hence Raytheon is the company in the title of this case. Mr. Hernandez worked for Hughes/Raytheon, a long-time employee, showed up at work one day. There were suspicions that he might be under the influence. He was given a drug test and indeed he tested positive for cocaine, and the employer gave him an option. It would fire him or he could choose to resign, and he chose to resign in lieu of being fired. And on his termination papers, it was written that he was resigning in lieu of termination for having violated workplace conduct rules. It was no more specific than that. It did not mention a positive cocaine test it just said fired for having violated workplace, or you know, resigning because of violating workplace conduct rules. That is 1991. In 1994, Mr. Hernandez applied to be rehired by Raytheon and as part of his application, he attached information about his attendance at Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and his rehabilitation. The Raytheon employee, who was reviewing his application for rehire notices this information. Sh-and notices that he said that he used to work there, so she went back to his personnel file and she sees the piece of paper saying that he resigned in lieu of termination for violating workplace conduct rules, and with that, she rejects his application for rehire, stating that Raytheon has a policy, once you have been fired or chosen to resign instead of termination, for having violated workplace conduct rules, you are permanently ineligible to be rehired. So she said once she saw the reason he left, that was it. Their policy, we just don''t rehire people who violated our workplace conduct rules. So Mr. Hernandez, first of all, brings a claim before EEOC, which did find discrimination. The case did not settle before EEOC, so Mr. Hernandez filed a lawsuit. When it got to the district court, the district court dismissed the case, in essence, saying that they saw no legal issues or factual issues here. They ruled in favor of the employer. They dismissed the case. It then was appealed by Mr. Hernandez to the 9th circuit court of appeals. The 9th circuit reversed. It said that no, we do think there are issues warranting a trial here, and so the 9th circuit ruled favor of Mr. Hernandez, which led Raytheon to ask the supreme court to review the case. So it got up to the Supreme Court. They took the case, and they issued a decision at the end of last year, and it was a unanimous decision. Now, not all 9 justices took part. 2 of the justices did not participate, Brior and Sutor did not participate. So it was 7 justices and those 7 were in agreement that basically the 9th circuit court of appeals got mixed up in terms of how to analyze this case. And this involve-it gets a little technical, but I think everyone can get this. In employment discrimination cases, there are two major ways we sort of look at discrimination. One is what we call disparate treatment, meaning the employer is taking an action because of somebody''s protected status. In this case, it would be disability, but it could be sex. It could be race. It could be religion. Obviously with ADA, it is about disability, where the employer is intentionally taking some kind of action, refusing to hire somebody, refusing to promote somebody. In this case, refusing to rehire Mr. Hernandez because of his disability. That is the issue that is looked at in terms disparate treatment cases. The other major way we can look at cases is what is called disparate impact. In those cases, it is not about the employer intentionally doing something because of a person''s status about having a disability. Rather, disparate impact cases involve situations where the employer has a neutral rule, a neutral policy, or neutral practice, but that policy, or practice, or rule, while it is neutral on its face. In other words, it wouldn''t even mention disability, it comes down more harshly on a particular group of people. So you are not looking for the employer to be doing, you know, because they want to single somebody out based on disability, but the way the neutral rule or practice works, it is going to come down more harshly on, in this case, people with disabilities, potentially it could screen out people with disabilities because of something about the way this neutral rule operates, or as it intersects with issues around disability. So these are two different ways of analyzing discrimination claims. They involve different kinds of evidence, different kinds of rules about what kinds of evidence needs to be looked although, whether it be before EEOC, or in a court, and fundamentally what the supreme court said is that in Mr. Hernandez'' case, the 9th circuit of appeals got these two types of discrimination mixed up. Now, everybody agreed that when Mr. Hernandez filed his lawsuit he filed it claiming disparate treatment. In other words, his claim is that Raytheon acted intentionally, that based on his having a disability, his drug addiction, that, that was the reason they refused to rehire him. All of the courts agreed, the district court, the 9 th circuit court of appeals, that when it came to the disparate impact, the idea that a neutral rule of screening out Mr. Hernandez, that Mr. Hernandez did not allege that in his lawsuit in a timely way. He did not include it. There is some information that he may have tried later on to bring it in, but was it was too late. There are deadlines for making these kinds of allegations and both the district court and the court of appeals said he was too late in making a claim of disparate impact, so the only way his case was going to be analyzed was looking for evidence that Raytheon intentionally decided not to rehire him because of his disability. Well, the 9th circuit, having said, you know, there is no disparate impact claim, what they ended up doing according to the supreme court, abou-was they kind of mixed these two theories together. They started out doing an analysis about intentional discrimination, disparate treatment, but then suddenly in the middle, they switched to the kind of analysis and the kind of evidence that look at in a disparate impact case. And the Supreme Court said you couldn''t do that. It is two different theories. You can''t conflate them. You can''t put the two of them together to make some new mega theory here. So they said the 9th circuit got the analysis wrong. So the Supreme Court reversed the 9th circuit decision in favor of Mr. Hernandez basically and said, you know what? You''ve got to go back and you''ve got to do the correct analysis. So the case has not been ultimately decided. There is no certainty as to whether Mr. Hernandez will ultimately win on merits or Raytheon will ultimately win on the merits. What the Supreme Court said is this case is a disparate treatment case. It is intentional discrimination, and what had to happen is, first of all, Mr. Hernandez, has to make out a kind of basic case of why he thinks he was discriminated against based on disability, and the supreme court said he has done that. He has done the basics that the law requires of him. At that point the burden shifted to Raytheon and Raytheon had to identify for the court a legitimate nondiscriminatory reason for its action. A legitimate nondiscriminatory reason, meaning they had to tell the court it wasn''t about his disability. It wasn''t about his drug addiction. That wasn''t what motivated us. That didn''t cause us to reject him. It was something else. They did that when it said the reason he was not considered for rehire was because we have a policy, a neutral policy that says anybody fired for, or who chooses to resign in lieu of firing, if it is involving violating one of our workplace conduct rules, you are ineligible for rehire, and that does not mention drug addicts. It is not geared just to people who are drug addicts or who violated the workplace rules on use of drugs. It could be somebody stole from the company or embezzled from the company, somebody who destroyed property. It could be for insubordination. So a whole range of workplace rules that would merit termination, and as a consequence, being terminated for that reason under Raytheon''s rule, you would be permanently ineligible for rehire. Raytheon said here is our legitimate nondiscriminatory reason that we did consider rehiring Mr. Hernandez. The Supreme Court said Raytheon met its burden. It offered a legitimate nondiscriminatory reason. At that point, the Supreme Court said what the 9th circuit needed to determine, the last step in this analysis, is whether Mr. Hernandez could say wait a minute, not so fast Raytheon. That was not your real reason for rejecting me. Yes, you are saying you have policy that you applied it me, it wasn''t my drug addiction, you say that, but in actuality, Mr. Hernandez could claim that was a pretext, that that wasn''t the real reason they rejected him. Mr. Hernandez has one last chance to show the court that it really was about his disability. That truly was the motivating factor. That is the last step here in this analysis, and the supreme court said the case has to go back down to the 9th circuit so that we can see, did Mr. Hernandez put in sufficient evidence to show that Raytheon is not really motivated by its neutral rule, they are just now sort of putting it forth as a pretext to kind of hide, or mask, their truly discriminatory reason for rejecting him that, they were singling him because of his status of having a disability. So that is why I say, we still don''t know who ultimately might win on the merits here that issue still has to be determined as to whether Hernandez can show sufficient evidence that Raytheon offered a pretext, not a real reason, but a pretext to hide their discrimination. So what you end up with in this case is that the Supreme Court really didn''t get into an in depth ADA analysis. What they really did was kind of almost a law school lecture about the difference between disparate treatment and disparate impact, and this applies not just to ADA but also to other employment discrimination laws, and they really never looked at specific ADA issues. They never examined the definition of disability as it might apply to people who are former drug addicts. We all know people who are currently using illegal drugs would be excluded from ADA coverage. But they don''t look at the issue of people who are no longer currently using. So that was not an issue that the Supreme Court looked at in this case. They did not examine anything about Mr. Hernandez'' qualifications for the job. There are just a host of specific ADA issues the court did not even look at. And they say quite bluntly, we are not even looking at any of these. So at the end of the day, the Supreme Court Decision is not one that tells us a whole lot more than we knew before the case about some of these ADA-specific issues. That will wait until another day, but what you just basically end up with is kind of very fundamental antidiscrimination law kind of approach in making sure these different theories of discrimination are accurately approached by the courts. So that is Raytheon versus Hernandez and I will be more than happy when we get to the Questions and Answers (Q&A) in just a few minutes if people want to talk further about it or have further questions, to please feel free to raise them. With that, Robin, I''m happy to turn it back to you and you can turn it over to the audience.
Great. Thanks, Sharon. You know, when you hear you talk about that case, you think it is such a minor, a lot of issues in the case, but when you hear all of the detail and all the things that went into the case, obviously there is a different perspective of it. I mean it is simple, but yet it is not simple with the entire little but, but, but, that you know, has occurred there. So thank you for your very complete discussion of that. I can''t encourage people enough to access and utilize the materials, if you have not, that are available on the EEOC''s website. There is a host of information there that will often help to answer a question in some of their guidance documents and such, so I think that can be useful to an individual, an advocate or employer in that regard.
The question I had for you had to do with the EEOC''s plans to correct, or clarify some of the confusion that is created by the supreme court, especially in regards to the of a person with a disability.
There are no plans right to go in and, you know, change the regulations or to put out new guidances around the definition of disability. What we have done, what we did shortly after the supreme court issued the Sutton decision, that was the famous mitigating measure case back in 1999. We did put out a fact sheet geared to our investigators. And that is available on our website, so again, go to the disability page and you will see it, but it is in instructions for EEOC investigators, but available to anybody and everybody about how one should approach the definition of disability in light of the Sutton decision around mitigating measures, and that by EEOC investigators, by our attorneys in terms of not being quick to believe that people who may use mitigating measures when they don''t, or if they do use them, the kind of in-depth analysis that one has to do to find out how well they work because many people who use mitigating measures can still be found to meet the definition of disability. The other thing that is emphasized in those instructions is the importance of the record of a disability definition, and certainly EEOC, since Sutton, in quite a number of cases, have found people who use mitigating measures, indeed we ca-cannot find that today they are currently substantially limited in a major life activity, but the record of definition in the past when they may not have ever used a mitigating measure or mitigating measures did not work very well, like of people say who go on medication, sometimes there can be a period of months, even years to find the right medication or the right combination of medications or the right dosage level. So today while they may not have a definition of disability in terms of being currently substantially limit, they do in the past and that is enough to bring them under the ADA''s protection. So all of that is spelled out in those instructions for investigators, and that is still, as I say, the current analysis that we are using on disability at this time.
I know there are many efforts, or I guess some collective efforts or collaborative efforts on the federal level to look at some potential legislation because what you are dealing with here is a definition of disability as it appears in the ADA itself as it was interpreted by the EEOC and the department of justice through their rule making in the regulations that the piece of legislation that is being referred to as ADA restoration act has gone under different drafts with potentially looking at some of the problems that the definition of disability has had with the supreme court and providing some language of clarification that would potentially be added into this statute. But in an election year, highly unlikely that something like that would go through, and then the political ramifications of amending the law itself, being weighed against the current climate and such. So whether we will see something that legislative level I think is still up to debate and discussion.
Thank you, Sharon, for the information. One of emerging areas that I wondering if EEOC was looking at was the ways in which employers are beginning to direct applicants to apply for employment. They are actually directing them to websites as the only means of application, and for some of the Internet users, their websites are not accessible. So I''m wondering if you have an opinion on that.
Okay. In terms of employers choosing to do their hiring over the Internet, over websites, in and of itself to say that is the only way we are going to do it is not necessarily a violation of the ADA. It becomes a violation, however, where because of disability, somebody can''t access it. So of course you are going to get into issues, how accessible is it. And in terms of there is we find a lot of confusion out there about what it means to have an accessible website. Employers not that familiar with it, and so there are definite problems about that. The other thing that we are trying to make clear to employers is that while they can in general say, you know, we would like to do all our hiring through this one mode, through the website, that it is a form of reasonable accommodation to allow person with a disability to apply through other means. That would also include being able to learn about potential job openings, because how else is someone going to apply if they don''t even know there are job openings, so reminding employers about how reasonable accommodation enters this picture, and they are going to be on grounds in terms of if they really insist it is just through the web and it is not completely and fully accessible based on disability, then for them somebody to learn about job openings is going to be failure to provide a reasonable accommodation. So we are aware of this problem and that it is with employer''s reliance on the web and so we are starting to try to get out that information to employers.
Yeah, and this has been an issue of long discussion because, again, you know, even the accommodations at times don''t provide me the equivalence or equal access such as 24-7 on a computer versus your office is only office to provide that assistance hours the day and that obviously comes into the discussion of what is equivalent access.
I think it is important to remember with Title I, unlike some of the other ADA titles, the fact that obviously it is not going to be equivalent access the office may only be open, say, 9:00-5:00 and obviously there is 24-hour access through the web. Nonetheless, that could still be okay for reasonable accommodation purposes if people do have; you know, 8 hours to get through to people. There are people who are handling phone calls, you know, whatever it may be. What could be more of an issue is the timeliness of it, in getting people information in a timely way, and we have talked to some employers about having to expedite, you know, maybe you are going to have to send something on overnight mail so they really do have an opportunity to get information in a timely way and to compete in a timely way. But it is not about necessarily looking for quote, unquote, the equivalent, that we are not necessarily looking at 24-hour means of getting hold of an employer in order to gain information, that the reasonable accommodation obligation wouldn''t require that necessarily.
Could you give us some guidance on determining with people who have episodes of disability, like, something like depression, bipolar condition, where you don''t know what the length of time is going to be or because of changes in medication, et cetera, you may not be able to predict what is to happen in the future. How do you, first of all, determine that they are a person with a disability, and second, whether they are going to be able to do the job and how would you-in determining whether they are going to be able to do the job, what would you consider in terms of the absenteeism or periods where they might not be able to function properly?
Okay. We got a lot there. Let us see if we can get through it. Let us start with definition of disability. As the commission indicated in its guidance on ADA and psychiatric disabilities, the fact that a lot of psychiatric as well as other physical disabilities may be episodic in nature, in other words, they are not constant. There can be period''s people cycle through where they will have symptoms of the disability and will have other periods where, no, there are no symptoms present and you mentioned bipolar. You mentioned depression, two good examples, where it is not where people experience the symptoms all the time; rather that they can be episodic, periods where they flare up. The fact that they are episodic does not that they can''t be covered under the ADA. In terms of determining the definition of meeting disability, obviously mitigating measures, going back to a previous question, can come into a play here. If people are using medications and the issue would first of all be, you know, if they are using medications, how well are they working, how well do they control the symptoms, what symptoms still break through, whether there are side effects from the medications and how serious, what period of time in terms of the disability itself, in terms of the illnesses itself, is it flaring up, what happens during those periods, what major life activities are effected here, how severely impacted, and we are looking at, you know, basically sort of recent for that first definition, you know, something within probably the last few months that gives some indication of how frequently these episodes occur, how long they last, how severe they are. Especially with the use of medication, we really can''t find somebody is substantially limited in a life activity, serious side from can also into then we look the record of definition forms. That is where you are going back into someone''s past history. That may be 5 years ago, even 10 years ago, but that is where we will look at what happened, maybe it is prior to ever using a mitigating measure or prior to finding the right mitigating measure and the same kinds of things. How often did these illnesses flair up? How long did they last when they did flare up? What happened during them? What major life activities were impacted and how severely so that is sort of the way that we are going to try and look to see what a definition disability somebody may fall under. Now, in terms of being qualified for a given job when you do have an episodic condition and you raised issues about, but what do you do about attendance and how do you sort of make plans and things? Obviously you are going to now start getting into very specifics, very specific information about a particular persons condition. Employers have to be careful about making, say, hiring decisions or promotion decisions based on somebody''s past medical history, especially where that medical history might be old and things may have changed, like use of a mitigating measure now. So to say that somebody 2-3 years ago may have had quite a number of absences due to an episodic illnesses, we don''t know that that tells us anything about what that means today for that person working or what it might mean 6 or 12 months from now for that person working. So the past doesn''t always give us a good idea of employment decisions to make. In fact, that can end up resulting in discrimination where an employer sort of fixates on that and there really isn''t some solid information, current information that really says, you know what, there are going to be an excessive amount of absences in the very near future. Now, if there is some information to suggest that the person really is going to have a lot of absences because it has continued and their illnesses is not changing and there are reasons, not just kind of speculation or what-if kind o-you know, the employer really making it up, but rather we''ve really got some solid information based on very current events about a lot of absences and that is impacting on doing job and if there is negative consequences, then that really could have an impact on whether the person is qualified for the job, whether it has become an undue hardship to keep granting absences, but two of us putting more specific facts, that is probably about the best answer I can give to your overall question at this point.
Okay, and who would make the determination when you are trying to determine if this person is going to be able to do the job? Would you as-how burdensome can you be in terms of asking for information from them and what they need to provide to you?
Again, I mean obviously the initial decision will be made by an employer, in terms of what kinds of information, that is really going to depend on what the situation is. I mean in certain circumstances, where somebody has had a lot of absences with this employer and the employer''s been granting leave, but it has been now ongoing, that they continue to need more, then that is going to give the employer the right to get some information from a person''s doctor about what is going on, about what the doctor reasonably foresees, given how many absences there have been connected with the illness, if things are about to improve, are they not about to improve, why are they not about to improve. On the other hand, if this is something that happened, again, let us say it is an application and it is post offer period and it comes out, somebody has depression or bipolar, but they are doing fine and there were no excessive absences, you know, in the previous job. You know, a few absences here and there. There may have been many more absences, say, five years ago. For the employer to now fixate on that, you know, -ear old information as opposed to more current information, now for the employer to be kind of asking for a whole bunch of information, that could be excessive under the ADA and could get the employer in trouble. So it is very fact-specific as to what kinds of information and how much of it the employer can go on what the particular facts are.
Somebody just hit it. Okay. I have a couple of questions that came in electronically. Let me just get those at this time. We have somebody who is from the Cincinnati area of Ohio who sent in a question asking what type of training that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission might offer in the geographic area and whether or not they have any ongoing programs or that they do for employers, or for others.
In terms of training, we do have an office in Cincinnati and you should get in touch with them. All of the local EEOC offices across the country do what we call TAP programs, technical assist program seminars, I think that is what it stands for if memory serves. Most offices put on two TAP programs per year. They do move them around. Always have them in the same location to give employers throughout a region as much of an opportunity to get to one of these. They generally will cover all the laws that we enforce. Very occasionally a TAPs program may focus just on ADA, but generally they tend to be focused on all of the statutes that we enforce and some of the program agendas will differ depending on what has happened, if there are new supreme court cases out, new developments, if the commission has issued new guidances in a particular area. So the programs will vary and the programs are set by the individual offices. This is not something controlled by the headquarters in Washington. So the best thing to do is contact your local EEOC. They do maintain mil-mailing lists of people who are interested in these programs so you can get flyers or e-mail notification about upcoming programs. If you want something more specific, you can also check in with the local EEOC about training they may offer, you know, geared, whether sometimes to a particular employer, sometimes it is through a local chamber of commerce, and there you can say here is what we would like you to focus on. So if you wanted to have a program just devoted to the ADA, you could discuss with them the possibility of organizing that kind of training. So that is what I would recommend, is start with the local office in Cincinnati, since that is where this is from, but for anybody, contact your local EEOC.
Great, Thank you. Another question that also came in electronically was a question regarding an individual who works within an environment that works with individuals who are undergoing treatment for chemical dependency, drug, alcohol, whatever, and the question comes up often times, you know, are they an individual with a disability under the ADA and how would you, you know, go through an offic-I know this is something we get frequently on our 800 line, an employer who calls, an employee just maybe got a DUI. And you know, maybe driving was a part of their job or something and now they can''t drive because of loss of license. Different states firs-have different laws, first time you are out, whatever. Trying to make that analysis is this a person with a disability that we have to look at reasonable accommodation. So I think the overall question is somebod-someone with chemical dependency, what makes someone covered under the ADA looking that against the definition?
Well, in terms of chemical dependency, we are going to divide it between drugs and alcohol, since ADA approaches these very differently as most of us know. With alcohol, the fact that somebody currently may be drinking, an alcoholic, someone who may be using alcohol. Protected in the sense that that person could still meet the definition of disability, it doesn''t mean we have a person saying that you are qualified and I will get to that in a moment, in terms of meeting the ADA definition, somebody who is an alcoholic and who is still currently drinking could still meet the definition of disability. It is important, though, to remember the definition says you have to have an impairment that substantially limits a major life act, or a record of an impairment that substantially limited a major life activity. Which means first identify what is the impairment? Alcoholism is recognized as impairment. It doesn''t mean that, since Robin brought up the issue of someone who gets a DUI, is this person an alcoholic, or is that someone who just had a little too much to drink? There is a big difference. So the mere fact that somebody has a DUI, or a couple of DUI''s doesn''t tell us a person is an alcoholic. So again, important to remember that for ADA coverage, it is important that the person be somebody who is an alcoholic as opposed to somebody who just happened to drink too much. Now, with drugs, it is going to be different. If you are currently using illegal drugs and be it, you know, something like cocaine or heroin or something like an expired prescription and the original prescription meant it was lawful drug use, but if I have an expired prescription and I''m somehow managing to get it filled, that is also considered illegally using drugs. If you are currently illegally using drugs, you are outside the ADA''s protection. You are not protected. The employer can act on the basis of your illegal use of drugs. It doesn''t matter if you are an addict, again, an addiction being an impairment. The current use knocks you out of the current ADA protection. So the only potential protection is if you are no longer currently using. So you have not used for a period of time, and that is open to debate as to what that means, that period of time. You''ve gone through rehabilitation potentially. So you are no longer currently using. Now, again, it has to be that you did have the impairment of addiction. So again, somebody who may have occasionally used drugs, but that person never was addicted, they never had an addiction. Then again, you are not going to fall under record of definition, say. You have to still have that identification of having had the impairment of addiction. So for people who use drugs, you are out if you are currently using, but potentially covered if you no longer use, but also you have an addiction. In terms of how the definition of disability works here, there is debate over how to look at addiction and how to look at alcoholism where people aren''t drinking anymore. People who have an addiction, it is in the medical community, have it for the rest of your life. It is not like somebody get over. You know, at any point, somebody who is an alcoholic can always have that urge to drink, or the person with the addiction to drugs always has the urge to use the drugs. So there is, based on what the medical community view it is, in terms of legal definitions under ADA, you could make an argument that the addiction is always present and that due to the nature of an addiction, you might be able to argue this person has a substantial limitation in a major life act today. Often people look at, say, caring for one''s self. On the other hand, given how courts have narrowed the definition of disability, many people feel it is probably a stronger argument to say somebody has a record of a disability. Both in terms of alcohol addiction and drug addiction, again, in the past, you can look for evidence that this person was substantially limited in caring for one''s self potentially, maybe other major life activities, concentration, thinking, a number of them may come into play, and so people will argue legally that that may better fit under the record of definition. So that is another way that gets looked at. Separate and apart, though, from the definition of disability are the issues of being qualified, and in particular, this comes up in cases involving alcohol use, and just to up on how Robin presented the issue, someone who is just gotten a DUI, license is suspended, driving is a part of the job and the employer is what do I do now kind of thing. Well, remember, first of all, as I said a moment ago, the mere use of alcohol does not signal where whether it is the addiction of the condition of alcoholism or not. And that is the first thing that has to be looked at. Let us assume for a moment that it is alcoholism and this person has just gotten a DUI and a suspended driver''s license, we have to separate this out, Is this about the disability or is this about having committed a criminal act, and those are two different things. Of course, there is a relationship, but the issue legally under the ADA is how close a relationship, and what the EEOC has said and what courts uniformly have said is that it is not that close a relationship, meaning that an employer does not have to provide a reasonable accommodation to somebody who has received a DUI and a suspended driver''s license, that that is not something about the disability. In other words, what EEOC and the courts have recognized in these cases is there is still an issue of choice, not perhaps about the drinking, but about getting behind the wheel of a car, and that they are not protected from the consequences of having chosen to drive under the influence of alcohol. So all the consequences that come from having made that choice to drive, including the suspended license, that is not about accommodating the disability. It is not the same the person who says to the employer, look, I''m really fighting my addiction at the moment. My alcoholism, I need some time off to go to an alcoholics anonymous meeting. That is something that would fall under reasonable accommodation, but not the DUI, not the suspended license. So the employer does not have to provide a reasonable accommodation like, you know, alternative forms of transportation while the person doesn''t have a license. Instead, the employer can hold the person accountable for not having a license and whatever those consequences are on the job, which might include termination at that point, that is not going to be considered a violation of the ADA. So remember in these cases about, especially the alcoholism ones, where people are drinking and then they are driving, losing licenses, other things that can happen, that is not going to be about disability. That is about their choices to engage in acts that result in criminal culpability and can hold people responsible for the criminal culpability. Does that get to it, Robin?
Yeah, thank you. But at the same time it always brings up more questions because while we are in this vein, if you look at the issue, and often it is frequently asked especially as different types of tests are now used in this being the case of the use of illegal drugs. Individuals who would be tested and at what point am I, you know, no longer currently using? Especially the use now of hair follicle testing and things of that nature, what is the, you know, read, or has that changed or is it still that case by case, you know, situation and this is no-it is not a big play, a moot point?
Yeah, EEOC is aware of how sophisticated drug testing has become and when we were first looking at these issues 12 years ago, it didn''t, we didn''t have to face this. So what does it mean to be a current user when drug testing was basically identifying drugs in a person''s system that was only there for the past few days or past couple of weeks or few weeks. That was still considered current use. But now it gets problematic, as you are mentioning the hair follicle test, that it may be months ago, that it is detecting drugs you haven''t used for several months. But these are so sophisticated that it is nonetheless picking up that use. Is that still considered current? And the EEOC, we are aware of these tests, we are looking at them, and it still very much the case by case, and so people would still have to make the argument about why, even though it is picking up this use, it doesn''t fit under what current ought to mean. People may remember when EEOC was developing the regulations; this was one of the big issues. What does current illegal use of drugs mean? As I remember it, we had comment-current meant everything from I think 24 hours ago to 10 years ago. I mean the span was incredible. And at the end of the day, the definition that EEOC went with was not to pick a number and say current means, you know, within the past few weeks or few months or year, but instead, use that is current enough to suggest an ongoing problem. So that is what we''ve got for the definition of current use. It is recent enough to suggest an ongoing problem. Somebody who has had very sophisticated drug test that is picking up use that happened several months ago, somebody who has now been through rehab, they have not used since that time, can argue that the isn''t really showing current use. In other words, it is not showing use recent enough to suggest an ongoing problem. What evidence are they putting forth? They are putting forth their rehab that they went through. If there is still attending, something like AA or narcotics anonymous, they are getting some kind of an ongoing treatment here. You know, put forth to say, you know, that was a few months ago. Here is all the rehab I had, that I''m continuing to have. They are back at work, you know, that they have got a good work record to show they are not missing work here and the argument can be you know, that meets the definition that it is not current. It is not recent enough to show an ongoing problem. You know, how that is going to play out in the I don''t think this issue has really been examined yet in the courts. We may have a couple of cases out there, but to my knowledge, there really hasn''t been any sustained in-depth look by courts about these more sophisticated tests. So I think they are going to come. I''m sure we will have such cases. We haven''t had them yet, so I think right now it is up in the air. EEOC has certainly cautioned employers, not that they can''t use these tests. Obviously ADA did does not forbid them, but just cautioned them about how ADA would apply to them, and that there can be arguments that while these tests have become more sophisticated, it is not at all clear that someone who tests positive on these newer, more sophisticated tests really will ultimately be deemed legally to be a current user. So it is a caution we are giving to employers, something just for them to think about in terms of using these tests or evaluating the test results, how they want to proceed.
I want to thank you for the fact sheets, which I have not seen. However, my husband has epilepsy, and we are struggling with sequence of how to use the ADA, how to use the right of an employee, to us-what are those rights and how to avail one''s self of the ADA, and also if the human resource department for those fact sheets or wha-jus-I''m not sure what I want to know if there is in your mind maybe a fact sheet coming out on sequence or guidelines for using the ADA and/or for a plug for my husband on epilepsy. Well, I can''t tell you, because I honestly don''t know what is going to be decided in terms of addressing the next particular disability and how ADA applies to it. So I honestly don''t know. I can''t tell if you it is going to be about epilepsy or not, but I''m more than happy to put your request forward to the right parties. In terms of documents, I know that as part of this audio conference, Robin sent to all participants the complete list of all the ADA-related documents EEOC has published. They are all on our website. You have the titles of them before you in your packet. And I think that is a good starting point, because, yes, there are quite a few things and I know it can seem overwhelming, but you know, what issues are of particular interest? What issues may be coming up for your husband right now in the workplace? And for example, if there is a reasonable accommodation issue, then you probably want to look at the guidance on reasonable accommodation. If it is about leave, yes, you could look at reasonable accommodation, but there is the fact sheet that looks at the overlap between ADA and the family and medical leave act. So that may be the document to look at. So depending on what the issues are human resources departments have no obligation to have all these EEOC fact sheets on hand. So that is why it is good to kind of every few months look at the EEOC website, to see if there is anything that has come out. I can''t tell you right now that there is. If we were working on something, sometimes when we are working on documents, I do tell people over these kinds of programs, hey, pay attention because something may be coming out soon. Right now we don''t have anything that is due to come out within the next few months. But it is good to keep, you know, every few months, checking just to make sure there isn''t anything new out there and if something new comes up, you know, see if it seems appropriate to your situation, and I think, you know, the documents, we''ve tried to write them for people who are employees or applicants or employers in a workplace, not for lawyers necessarily, but for people kind of a practical how-to. Hopefully these documents can kind of suggest the appropriate way to deal with issues as they are coming up. You''ve also got two resources available as well. One is the Disability and Business Technical Assistance Center (DBTAC) themselves. If you are not quite sure what is the appropriate route to go, I know that they take calls, as do we at EEOC. You also call us. If it is not kind of clear to us what is the next step, do I need to be filing complaint with EEOC, do I need to my asking employer for something, you know, these are questions that can be directed both to the DBTAC and to EEOC.
Yes, the materials do get confusing because many people don''t know which one to look in. I know that some people don''t often catch what the titles are, for example I was working with someone looking at the documents related to pre employment medical inquiry, and didn''t realize there was also a document dealing with medical inquiry such that would be relevant to post employment or when you are already working. I think sometimes it becomes confusing with the title of the documents that people don''t understand what might be in them or what can apply.
It can be, I appreciate that that, you know, part of the down side of all of these different documents. You are right. Sometimes you do have to read a little carefully so that you understand distinctions that are being made here, but that is what happens when we have a law that is got as many pieces to it as the ADA does. So when it gets a bit too much, whether it is calling us at the EEOC, we are more than happy to walk you through our documents to help find the right one. Also, to talk to you about things that maybe aren''t in the documents or you just need a little more personal guidance. Certainly you can call us and also can call the DBTAC with the same kinds of questions.
Basically, we have an employee volunteer program in our executive office on aging. One of the questions that comes up is what standards do we apply? How does the ADA view volunteers? What requirements are applied? Are they program participants under Title II or 3 or should they be treated like pseudo employees with voluntary program applying Title I-like standards?
In terms of the status of volunteers, most likely this going to be an issue, since I gather from the introduction you are with the state agency, so it sounds like you are going to be under Title II of the ADA as a state run program that, you have a volunteer program it is open to the public or certain members of the public to join as volunteers. That would bring it under Title II and certainly that can entail some obligations to make sure it is accessible to people with disabilities. In terms of the Title I employment provisions, with limited exceptions, volunteers are not considered employees, but there are some limited exceptions, and basically what that means is that we will consider as employees when is to serve a volunteer in order to become a full-time paid employee. In other words, the only way you are ever going to get permanent full-time paid employment, you first have to serve a stint as a volunteer. This sometimes happens, for example, in fire fighting. People first of all have go through a volunteer fire fighter program, serve a time as a volunteer and only in that way will they now be considered for full-time paid employment. If that kind of circumstance arises, then that might be considered employment for purposes of ADA coverage. The other way we sometimes cover volunteers is when it may not be requirement to get paid employment that you serve as a volunteer, but it may get you enhanced consideration. So it is not absolutely required, but it might get you enhanced consideration, like if there is a point system, it gets you 50 extra points to be considered for hiring. That is another way that we sometimes bring in volunteers and consider them to be employees. But that is pretty narrow exception In all other kinds of cases, the fact that somebody is a volunteer is not going to bring them under the employment provisions of the ADA, but again, as it could be in your particular case, it sounds like Title II is a state agency, but potentially volunteer programs run by organizations covered Title III of the ADA. So people in those, you know, be it state agencies or local agencies or public just because you have a volunteer you can''t think, oh, you know, no ADA coverage for that. There very much could be. It just wouldn''t be under Title I. It would probably under Title II or Title III of the ADA.
So we use the auxiliary aid standard.
I would like to know based on the number of military soldiers that we have coming off, transitions from military life to civilian life, how does the ADA rule effect them, and if, way-in other words, are they under the same law as anyone else coming, coming from active duty to look fo-be gainfully employed in the civilian community?
Well, in terms of people leaving the military, if they are active duty personnel in the military, no, they are not covered under the ADA. They are covered under military law and so the ADA would not apply. But for anybody who is leaving military service, returning to civilian life, then ADA could and would apply to the extent that now they are an applicant with a disability or we hope, becoming an employee with a disability. So somebody who is discharged from military service and is now beginning to look for jobs and they now have a disability, then all the ADA rules that apply to applicants will apply to them and the same thing once they become an employee.
But the clarification being that they would have to have discharged from the military because military is not covered by the ADA. So as long as they are still an activ-
No, if you are still on active duty, you are still a member of the military the ADA does not apply. For civilians, if you are a civilian personnel working for the military, it is not the ADA, but the rehabilitation act, but it is as a civilian. Rather remembering the military has both people who serve active duty military capacity, soldiers, marines, that kind of thing, versus they will have a whole host of people they hire as civilians those civilians working for the military would be covered under the rehabilitation act, the sister act to the ADA, but somebody who has been serving in active duty military position, soldier, infantry, marines, all that, if they are still on active duty, then, no, the ADA or the rehab act would not apply to them.
But taking the different stance because we''ve gotten some calls like this in our office and I''m sure the other disability assistance technical assistance centers have also, that the person is reservist, was called up active, but is no longer called up, you know, is no longer active, and goes back into his, you know, previous role, per se, but may have been injured.
Somebody was a reservist, but they are now coming back, again, back to the employment that they have, is that your question, Robin? To the extent that they had an injury that while they were serving abroad and that injury is now something we can consider a disability under the ADA if they are returning to their employer, then, yes, ADA very much could apply to them in that sense.
And the employer would have an obligation to address reasonable accommodation.
Absolutely. If it is somebody who now, as I say, has a disability and therefore could be entitled to reasonable accommodation, in other words, the employer could not make the claim, and I don''t know if this is what you are hearing, is that well, you''ve got that serving on reserve duty in Iraq, I don''t have to do something for you, I don''t know if that is the kind of thing employers are or you are not going to get protection, I mean that would not be true. As long as they are no longer you know, their duty in the reserves is over, they have been released, they have come back to the U.S., they are not part of their reserve units, they are returning to their old jobs, but they are now returning with a disability from their service overseas, if it is a disability, then, the employer is going to have to consider reasonable accommodation for them. I had one question coming from the employer you know, is this my obligation, this person left and was able to do the job, comes back and is not. You know, it is no different than the person who suddenly has an illness resulting in disability or an injury, you know, bad car accident that just resulted in disability. So the idea that, you know, yesterday you have a disability and today you do, then, you know, how that disability occurred for ADA purposes is irrelevant. The fact that it wasn''t there before is irrelevant. If it is there now and in terms of, you know, is the person qualified. I mean certainly an employer under those circumstances, there may indeed be some issues s the person still qualified, including looking at reasonable accommodation, the ability to perform the essential functions. So I could imagine situations where having developed a disability somebody may no longer be able to perform the essential functions.
Regarding the military question, the reason I ask that is because of have a lot of soldiers that were discriminated against when they came back from Vietnam, not reservists, but active duty personnel that were in during the Vietnam War. And some are Korean War, and they have been more or less discriminated against because of their disability. That is why I asked the question.
Well, again, I think the issue becomes if they are still on active duty the military says you can''t do certain things, and then the ADA had nothing to say about that. But to the extent they are being discharged from the military, now are reentering civilian life, and if employers discriminate against them because, you know, they lost a leg in Iraq or they lost an a.m. you know, in whatever way they now have a disability, a civilian employer that says, you know, we are not going to hire you because you are an amputee or refuses to provide reasonable accommodation for them, then the ADA would protect them.
Could you give more information about what constitutes a mitigating measure, what are of the limitations of that?
In terms of mitigating measures, basically these are considered devices, measures, that as the name implies, they somehow mitigate the symptoms of a given medical condition. Common mitigating measures, eyeglasses, contact lenses, hearing aids, medication, a prosthetic device. These are considered mitigating measures because they either eliminate or mitigate the symptoms of a given condition. The issue becomes, though, how well do they mitigate? In the Supreme Court case Sutton versus United Airlines, it dealt with women who wore corrective lenses. Corrective lenses, somewhat unique in being able in many cases really to successfully mitigate whatever the particular vision impairment is. I think in that case, the women basically with glasses on had almost 20/20 vision. Without them, they were considered legally blind, but with the glasses, pretty much 20/20 vision. There isn''t that kind of success necessarily with a lot of other mitigating measures, even in the case of glasses, with corrective lenses. In terms of coverage under the ADA, the issue becomes if you are a mitigating if you are using one of them, how well it working and what kind of symptoms, or what kind of impact do you still have even though you are using a mitigating measure. So there are people, with very severe vision impairments that might, you know, use a corrective lens of some kind, but they are still deemed legally blind. Even with the lenses on. So it may give them slightly better ability see, but not a whole lot. So the issue is when they are wearing those lenses, just how well can they see? For people who are using a hearing aid, how good is you are with hearing aid on? Again, there are people who will use it to pick up some sounds, but can they hear speech? No. They can''t hear it. So you are really trying to learn to determine just what kind of hearing remains and how good is that hearing, even when they are using a hearing aid. Same thing as we discuss add few minutes ago on medication. Is it really working? How well is it working? Under what conditions does it work? Does it not work? The other thing that we look at is side effects from the mitigating measure itself, which can come up, especially with medications. A lot of medications, as we know, may do a pretty good job of mitigating the symptoms of the illness or the condition, but medications can produce side effects. So to give one that we have run across a number of times, birth defects. There are a number of very strong medications. They do what they are mainly supposed to which is to control symptoms of a given condition, but you are strongly advised when you are taking them that you should not engage in reproduction. There should not be any attempt to have a baby because taking this medication is bound to or most likely could have the development of a fetus. Well, if that is a potential restriction on reproduction, we have found people are substantially limited in reproduction because of the necessity of taking a medication, because of the high risk of birth defects. Therefore, they have decided that they might otherwise choose to reproduce, but they are not going to because of that very high risk. We have found substantial limitation of reproduction because of the use of a mitigating measure. So these are all kinds of things that after the Sutton decision that we look at now in terms of how we whether somebody has a disability.
Okay. Where is the dividing line between the mitigating measure and something that might be considered assistive technology? Hearing aids as assistive technology rather than something like medication?
It is kind o-there isn''t a nice dividing line between it. And that is something that EEOC has looked at. It has not gotten a lot of attention in the courts, and in fact, it is a good question you are raising because there is concern that too many things get lumped into the idea of being mitigating measures. In fact, the biggest area of concern actually has to do with, there was a case in which the Supreme Court also brought up the idea of mitigating behavior, and that one is even more kind of difficult to kind of understand. Well, what does it mean to have mitigating behavior? The particular case dealt with a gentleman''s monocular vision and the Supreme Court talked about subtle movements of the head or of the one remaining eye to compensate for the lack of vision in the other eye. But again, that is a very kind of nebulous concept about what constitutes mitigating behavior. So I hear what you are asking about hearing aids as assistive technology. Hearing aids often have been looked at and without much challenge as a form of a mitigating measure, but there isn''t one overarching definition that we have. Supreme court did not define the term. You know, here is what a mitigating measure is, and so it is something that I think needs more attention paid to it, so we don''t kind of, you know, as you are pointing out, it would I don''t think it is what the supreme court meant to do, and I think it would be a perversion that suddenly all the assistive technology be looked at as mitigating. One thing we have looked at is the idea of a mitigate I g-mitigating measure is actually enabling the person to sort do whatever the major life activity is so for example, you know, the idea behind corrective lenses is you can see. The idea behind a hearing aid is you can hear, but for example, the use of a wheelchair, the wheelchair is allowing somebody mobility to move around. You cannot walk. Walking is the major life activity, and if somebody, due to paralysis, say, yes, they have mobility with the use of a wheelchair, but they are still unable to walk. So we''ve rejected the idea that the when I say we, the EEOC has rejected the idea that a wheelchair is a mitigating measure because it is done nothing to mitigate the actual symptom or the actual effect of the impairment; namely, you cannot walk That wheelchair does not permit one to walk. So that is a distinction we have drawn and why we have rejected certain things like wheelchairs, we''ve said, are not mitigating measures. You still can''t walk.
Why is it that government agencies tend to have some discrepancy in the definition of disabilities? I just want to give the example. I had a circumstance four or five years ago that mandated I contact the department of education to try to get it corrected. Me, I am disabled. My disability comes the Social Security department.
I think I know where this is going. The reason there is a discrepancy is because there are different definitions of disability in various laws and in various government programs. There is not one definition, and that does get confusing because it is important to remember that when you are dealing with different laws or different agencies, even different federal laws, different state laws, different federal agencies, different state agencies, we are often using different definitions of and they don''t necessarily translate. So the fact that somebody may have a Social Security, that they can get Social Security disability benefits, that doesn''t necessarily mean that they meet the ADA definition of disability or vice versa, so very important to understand that the definition of disabilit-there are so many different definitions of disability and that right now as we talk about ADA, we are just talking about the ADA''s definition.
Well, may I ask you, how does one like myself, one who is disabled, how am I able to-I hate to use the word "discriminate" between what the definitions are? Is there some booklet, or some book or some library place we can go to find out what each agency uses as a definition for disability? Because as a person like myself would not kno-
I that as you are interested in certain don''t know if one place that you can kind go to all of them listed because there would be so many, but I think that, you know, first of all, you can go to EEOC website. You have all our documents. We have one on e definition of disability. So now you can see exactly how the ADA defines disability. If you are in Social Security, you go on the Social Security website they will have their definition of disability. If it is a workers'' compensation issue, you can go to your particular state workers'' compensation board and they can give you their definition of disability. So I think it is more going to the particular source that you want to know what is your definition of disability to see do I meet it or not meet it.
And some of the disability organizations work to collect some of this information such as your independent living centers and such. If they are dealing and working towards housing and employment and things, many of them will have that information, but it is probably a quagmire for all of us to find out who is the person with the disability and I would have to say in our work, and I know with my colleagues across, when we talk about most frequently asked questions, the one that rises to the top, who is a person with a disability and that depends on the law that you are talking about, the statute. And that is where it rises across the board, defining disabilities under different programs. Well, thank you very much, to those of you in the audience for you are very thought provoking questions today. The very broad array of questions has led us in some different directions and I hopeful that every one of you got some information out of this session. I would like to point you to our February session as we conclude today. Our February session is for February 17th from 1:00 to 2:30 p.m., central time. As to your local time, you will have to do the math wherever you are located. The topic, we are shifting a bit and looking at the issues of evaluating software accessibility, is anything really truly accessible, that is the title of the session. Debbie Cook from Access IT at the University of Washington is our featured speaker at this particular session. We will be looking at what is being done and what has been done by industry, by the standards related to looking at software. One of the main things we look at accessibility of information technology, it is not always is the computer going to be able to be made accessible with assistive technologies and such, but as we go to look at the software, I could have the perfectly accessible computer with all the bells and whistles, but the software I''m using is still not accessible and how do we begin to look at that and try to impact the software industry and try to produce and create accessibility software. That is scheduled for February. More information session is available at www.ADAGreatLakes.org or from your local disability and business technical assistance center. I would to thank Sharon for her time today, and in the session, and forgiving us a wealth of information and I hope that everyone is able to join us again in the future will be coming back, or someone from the EEOC will be coming for our July session kind of do a recap on the year, looking at the ADA 14 years later and evaluating what has happened from case law and other perspectives. So if are you already scheduled to join us, please plan to join us in July. The entire schedule of the sessions is available on our website at www.adagreatlakes.org or by contacting locating your local center. Thank you one and all, and we hope to see you again next month.