Job & Family Services Civil Rights
Civil Rights
Bureau of Civil Rights (BCR) - FAQ's
FAQs   FAQ's: Frequently asked questions
The following questions and answers were obtained from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Civil Rights. For more information regarding Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) you can contact us or go to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services web site- www.hhs.gov
 
Who Is Protected Under the ADA?
The ADA protects qualified individuals with disabilities. An individual with a disability is a person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits major life activities; has a record of such an impairment; or is regarded as having such an impairment. Major life activities means functions such as caring for one's self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning and working. Under the ADA, a qualified individual with a disability is an individual with a disability who meets the essential eligibility requirements for receipt of services or participation in programs or activities. Whether a particular condition constitutes a disability within the meaning of the ADA requires a case-by-case determination.

Physical or mental impairments include, but are not limited to: visual, speech, and hearing impairments; mental retardation, emotional illness, and specific learning disabilities; cerebral palsy; epilepsy; muscular dystrophy; multiple sclerosis; orthopedic conditions; cancer; heart disease; diabetes; and contagious and noncontagious diseases such as tuberculosis and HIV disease (whether symptomatic or asymptomatic).

What Is Title II of the ADA?
Title II of the ADA prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities on the basis of disability in all programs, activities, and services of public entities. Public entities include state and local governments and their departments and agencies. Title II applies to all activities, services and programs of a public entity.
What Is Prohibited Under Section 504 and the ADA?
Both Section 504 and the ADA prohibit covered entities from discriminating against persons with disabilities in the provision of benefits or services or the conduct of programs or activities on the basis of their disability.

Section 504 applies to programs or activities that receive Federal financial assistance. Title II of the ADA covers all of the services, programs, and activities conducted by public entities (state and local governments, departments, agencies, etc.), including licensing.

Who Is Protected Under Section 504 and the ADA?
Section 504 and the ADA protect qualified individuals with disabilities. An individual with a disability is a person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; has a record of such an impairment; or is regarded as having such an impairment. Major life activities means functions such as caring for one's self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning and working. Under Section 504 and the ADA, a person is a qualified individual with a disability if he or she meets the essential requirements for receipt of services or benefits, or participation in the programs or activities of a covered entity. The question of whether a particular condition is a disability within the meaning of Section 504 and the ADA is determined on a case-by-case basis.
What Is a "Physical or Mental Impairment?"
Physical or mental impairments include, but are not limited to: visual, speech, and hearing impairments; mental retardation, emotional illness, and specific learning disabilities; cerebral palsy; epilepsy; muscular dystrophy; multiple sclerosis; orthopedic conditions; cancer; heart disease; diabetes; and contagious and noncontagious diseases such as tuberculosis and HIV disease (whether symptomatic or asymptomatic).
 
Q: What is the Bureau of Civil Rights' jurisdiction?
A: BCR has two major areas of jurisdiction. One is the enforcement of ODJFS' non-discrimination (Equal Employment Opportunity) policy as it applies to its internal employees. The other is the enforcement of non-discrimination laws as they apply to people who access or participate in its program services throughout the State of Ohio.
 
Q: How can an ODJFS employee or state program participant learn about their EEO/civil rights and responsibilities?
A: By calling BCR and talking to one of our enforcement officers. Also, BCR conducts continuing EEO/civil rights training for internal state employees and for external county employees and managers throughout the year.
 
Q: How does an ODJFS employee file a discrimination complaint?
A: By contacting our office and filling out a complaint form. An internal complaint with BCR must be filed within 30 days from the alleged date of discrimination. An employee can also file a charge of discrimination with the Ohio Civil Rights Commission (OCRC), within six months, and with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), within 300 days.
 
Q: How does a program participant file a discrimination complaint?
A: A program participant can file with the county agency he/she believes discriminated and with the ODJFS Bureau of Civil Rights. BCR will also inform the complainant of what federal agency they may file with, either the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Agriculture or the Department of Labor. A complaint must be filed within 180 days from the alleged date of discrimination.
 
Q: On what basis and for what reason can an employee file a discrimination complaint?
A: The bases for filing an internal complaint with BCR are race, color, religion, national origin, sex,  sexual orientation, age (over 40), disability, and veteran status. For filing with OCRC and EEOC, the bases are race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age and disability. The reasons for filing discrimination complaints generally involve different or disparate treatment in hiring, promotion, terms of employment, discipline (including termination) and accessibility and reasonable accommodations for disabilities.
 
Q: On what basis and for what reason can a program participant file a discrimination complaint?
A: The bases for filing a discrimination complaint with BCR are race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, disability, ancestry, veteran status, and citizenship/participant status (WIA program only). The reasons for filing discrimination complaints generally involve the fact that the person was denied or delayed any service, aid or other benefit provided under an ODJFS program, be subjected to segregation or disparate treatment in an ODJFS program, be provided services using different rules to decide who will get assistance, be limited in the use of buildings, rooms or other space in a way that denies individual participation or access, and accessibility and reasonable accommodations for disabilities.