New Disability Regulations Are Stressing Federal Contractors
Disabled workers under employ for federal contractors will need to come forward with their status soon, as new U.S. regulations requiring a minimum of 7 percent disabled workers will go into effect next week. Those contractors, which will include Boeing, Dell, AT&T, and 40,000 others, according to The Wall Street Journal, will need to have evidence that they are working toward or have met that goal, or else face repercussions that could even lead to loss of government contracts. The new regulation was made to boost employment for a group that has been seeing high rates of unemployment.
However, this puts companies in difficult positions in terms of how they go about gathering the information to comply with the new rules. Not all workers disclose their disability status, and not all want to — but full knowledge of those employed is necessary to meet the correct quota for some companies. “The word disability means you’re not able to do something. People don’t want to be perceived that way,” said Joe Gavigan, an engineer at GE Aviation, to The Wall Street Journal. Gavigan was a member of the U.S. Air Force Academy and was paralyzed during his time there. “You don’t want your boss to see you as being limited in your capability.”