This is a summary of certain rights that an individual with KLS may have under U.S. law. It is provided as general guidance only.
Kleine-Levin Syndrome Disability Rights
EDUCATION: The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
- The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requires public schools to make available to all eligible children with disabilities a free appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment appropriate to their individual needs.
- IDEA requires public school systems to develop appropriate Individualized Education Programs (IEP’s) for each child. The specific special education and related services outlined in each IEP reflect the individualized needs of each student.
- IDEA mandates that particular procedures be followed in the development of the IEP. Each student’s IEP must be developed by a team of knowledgeable persons and must be at least reviewed annually. The team includes the child’s teacher; the parents, subject to certain limited exceptions; the child, if determined appropriate; an agency representative who is qualified to provide or supervise the provision of special education; and other individuals at the parents’ or agency’s discretion.
- If parents disagree with the proposed IEP, they can request a due process hearing and a review from the State educational agency if applicable in that state. They also can appeal the State agency’s decision to State or Federal court.
For more information, contact:
Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services
U.S Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, S.W. Washington, D.C. 20202
Information line: 202-245-7468
EMPLOYMENT: Americans with Disability Act (ADA) of 1990
- The ADA prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in employment, state and local government, public accommodations, commercial facilities, transportation, and telecommunications. Title I of the ADA prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in employment.
- Title I prohibits private employers, state and local governments, employment agencies and labor unions from discriminating against qualified individuals with disabilities in job application procedures, hiring, firing, advancement, compensation, job training, and other terms, conditions, and privileges of employment
- The ADA covers employers with 15 or more employees, including state and local governments. It also applies to employment agencies and to labor organizations. The ADA’s nondiscrimination standards also apply to federal sector employees under section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act
- To be protected by the ADA, one must have a disability, defined as: physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major activities, a person who has a history or record of such an impairment, or a person who is perceived by others as having such an impairment
- A Substantial Impairment is one that significantly limits or restricts a major life activity such as hearing, seeing, walking, breathing, performing manual tasks, caring for oneself, learning or working
- ADA requires an employer to provide reasonable accommodation to qualified individuals with disabilities, unless to do so would cause undue hardship
- Undue hardship is defined as an action requiring significant difficulty or expense when considered in light of factors such as an employer’s size, financial resources, and the nature and structure of its operation
Leave is one type of reasonable accommodation:
- Permitting the use of accrued paid leave, or unpaid leave, is a form of reasonable accommodation when necessitated by an employee’s disability. An employer does not have to provide paid leave beyond that which is provided to similarly-situated employees. Employers should allow an employee with a disability to exhaust accrued paid leave first and then provide unpaid leave.
An employee with a disability may need leave for a number of reasons related to the disability, including, but not limited to:
- Obtaining medical treatment, rehabilitation services, or recuperating from an illness or an episodic manifestation of the disability
- An employee with a disability who is granted leave as a reasonable accommodation is entitled to return to his/her same position unless the employer demonstrates that holding open the position would impose an undue hardship
- It is also unlawful to retaliate against an individual for opposing employment practices that discriminate based on disability or for filing a discrimination charge, testifying, or participating in any way in an investigation, proceeding, or litigation under the ADA
Additional resources for information:
U.S Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC):
1801 L Street, NW
Washington, DC 20507
Information line: 1-800-669-3362
Office on the Americans with Disabilities Act
Civil Rights Division
P.O Box 66118
Washington, DC 20035
Information line: 1-800-514-0301
Questions and Answers: http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/ada/q%26aeng02.htm
A guide to Disability Rights Laws: http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/ada/cguide.htm