The growth of civil rights for the disabled in recent years has focused on the problems of physical disabilities and removal of architectural barriers. Notable gains have been made in society's recognition of the rights and needs of such individuals through the American’s with Disabilities Act, but acknowledgement of the less obvious condition of psychiatric disability has lagged far behind. This is particularly true of individuals with mental illness, which constitutes probably the largest single group of disabled individuals, and one of the least vocal. Because of negative social attitudes, individuals with mild disorders hesitate to call attention to their condition. The issue of employment of the mentally ill has become increasingly critical over the last decade as the general trend of deinstitutionalization has resulted in greater numbers of individuals with mental illness being maintained in the community, while at the same time government benefits have failed to keep pace with inflation. The purpose of this Note is to analyze the potential impact the ADA will have on this problem of employment discrimination against individuals disabled by mental illness.
Note, New Protections for Persons with Mental Illness in the Workplace under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, 40 Clev. St. L. Rev. 63 (1992)