WATCH – Know your rights! –
July 30, 2020 – “The idea that, quote, ‘it’s a lifestyle’ or a choice is just wrong,” said Francis.
An employer has to give a person diagnosed with substance use disorder time off to go to recovery meetings or other treatment.
A landlord can’t use past substance abuse as a reason not to rent. But, it can be easy to lose these protections. Francis told 2News: You also lose protection if you are deemed a risk to others.
Stereotyping has been illegal since the late 1980s, but Francis says discrimination against people dealing with substance use disorder still happens.
“We need to shift our paradigms to think about substance use disorder as health problems,” she said.
When discrimination happens, it’s on the disabled person to prove the burden which can be timely, costly, and stressful. As Francis put it:
“Just imagine what it would be like if you had a disability and you couldn’t get housing because people wouldn’t rent to you.”