Journal: Work. 2007;28(4):391-402.
Authors and affiliations: Vierstra CV, Rumrill PD, Koch LC, McMahon BT. Kent State University, Department of Educational Foundations & Special Services, Kent, Ohio, USA. PMID: 17522460
Information from the Integrated Mission System of the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) was used to investigate the employment discrimination experiences of Americans with multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) in comparison to Americans in a general disability group with allergies, asthma, HIV, gastrointestinal impairment, cumulative trauma disorder and tuberculosis.
Specifically, the researchers examined demographic characteristics of the charging parties; the industry designation, location, and size of employers against whom allegations were filed; the nature of discrimination (i.e., type of adverse action) alleged to occur; and the legal outcomes or resolutions of these allegations.
Findings indicate that:
n Persons with MCS were, on average, older than the comparison group and comparatively overrepresented by Caucasians and women.
n People with MCS were proportionally more likely than the comparison group to allege discrimination related to reasonable accommodations.
n People with MCS were proportionally more likely than the comparison group to file allegations against employers in the manufacturing and public administration industries, employers with 201-500 workers, and employers in the Western Census region.
n People with MCS were proportionally more likely than the comparison group to receive non-merit resolutions as a result of the EEOC's Americans with Disabilities Act Title I investigatory process.
Implications for policy and advocacy are addressed.