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Old 10-21-2003, 02:35 PM   #1
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Question Is being cross eyed a disability?

I'm 18 and I've had crossed eyes (strabismus) my whole life. Yesterday a friend told me that I can't get fired from my job because I have a disability. I was like, no I don't! And I had a big argument.

I don't see how its a disability if I can see good without glasses. Both of my eyes have good vision. Its just that because my eyes cross so much my brain ignores the eye that I am not focusing with. If I look to my right, my left eye will cross and if I look to my left, my right eye will cross in. If I focus straight ahead with one eye, the other eye crosses. Basically I use both eyes, just not at once.


Does this make me disabled?? I think people underestimate my vision because of my condition. They look at my eyes and assume I can't see. I might just be because my eyes are severely crossed, which is less common than slightly crossed eyes.

So are crossed eyes a disability?

 
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Old 11-17-2003, 10:01 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natalia19
I'm 18 and I've had crossed eyes (strabismus) my whole life. Yesterday a friend told me that I can't get fired from my job because I have a disability. I was like, no I don't! And I had a big argument.

I don't see how its a disability if I can see good without glasses. Both of my eyes have good vision. Its just that because my eyes cross so much my brain ignores the eye that I am not focusing with. If I look to my right, my left eye will cross and if I look to my left, my right eye will cross in. If I focus straight ahead with one eye, the other eye crosses. Basically I use both eyes, just not at once.


Does this make me disabled?? I think people underestimate my vision because of my condition. They look at my eyes and assume I can't see. I might just be because my eyes are severely crossed, which is less common than slightly crossed eyes.

So are crossed eyes a disability?
NOPE. It's not a disability unless it interfers with your ability.

What your friend is referring to is probably the laws against discrimination. If your employer fires you simply and only because you are cross eyed and no other reason you could sue that employer for discrimination.
In order to sue for discrimination you would have to prove the boss fired you ONLY because you are cross eyed and not for any reason associtated with your ability to do the job.
It would have nothing to do with disability but rather have everything to do with being discriminated against.

 
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Old 05-11-2011, 07:53 AM   #3
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Re: Is being cross eyed a disability?

A diagnosis does not equal a disability.

*Person has diabetes, is fired for having to give himself insulin shots, may have a case for discrimination.
*Person has diabetes, is fired for stealing from the company, can't claim disability discrimination as the firing has nothing to do with his diagnosis but solely due to his actions/behavior
*Person born with eyesight in only one eye, works as a Sales Manager, and every Sales Manager in the company is laid off when the company is bought out can't claim discrimination as it's not due to his diagnosis but due to business decisions.
*Person is a truck driver, has an accident in which he looses vision in his left eye may be disabled from that occupation. But may be trainable for a non-driving occupation. He may be able to eventually drive his car again but may not pass required tests for semi driving, etc. If after 12 wk on FMLA they can not find another job his employment can reasonably be severed without any claim for discrimination.
*Person works as an accountant, looses vision in his left eye. May be temporarily disabled while he adjusts and possibly be fully able to re-enter his occupation. or if the injury is so severe as to impact his balance, etc, he may be disabled for a longer term. IF the company policy is to terminate upon end of FMLA then that is not a cause for claim for discrimination.
*Person born without a left leg, becomes an accountant and is fired due to hitting a coworker can not claim discrimination as the loss of the job was not in any way affected by his condition, but by his behavior at work.


There is legislation called the Americans with Disabilities Act for employees in the US that helps make sure people are not denied jobs, promotions, etc based on disabilities UNLESS making accommodations for such is not reasonably possible.
*Manager at a cell phone dealer looses leg in accident. He requests a stool at the counter which has wheels to aid in mobility so as not to be on crutches all day. This is a reasonable accommodation and ADA is there to help make sure this can work.
*Semi truck driver develops uncontrolled diabetes with frequent hypoglycemic incidents where he passes out, and thus looses his CDL license. If after reasonable amount of time, and while on FMLA, the condition can not be stabilized the company can sever employment at the end of FMLA if there is no way he can do his job (which he can't) though many companies may seek to find him a dispatcher position (if they have it) to make a reasonable accommodation.

For anyone who goes out for any disabling condition, FMLA law allows 12 weeks of leave per year. Many employers terminate employment when the 12 weeks is reached Especially if 12 successive weeks due to employee's own condition. Not so much, for example, when employee caring for dying spouse and needs 1 wk a month for travel to another state for care. In that case many employers have unpaid leave available and can retain the employee. But even then if it's undue business burden the employee can be terminated when FMLA runs out and they continue to take time off for this.


Since you've had this condition all your life, it's only discriminatory firing when the employer states before, during or after employment that they need to remove you due to your crossed eyes.
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Last edited by SpineAZ; 05-11-2011 at 07:58 AM.

 
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Old 05-11-2011, 08:03 AM   #4
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Re: Is being cross eyed a disability?

Not a disability. It is something that is easily fixed by surgery. I had to have the surgery twice but eventually my eyes were corrected. My vision is poor in my left eye because of it but not a disability.

 
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Old 05-11-2011, 12:46 PM   #5
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Re: Is being cross eyed a disability?

Wow didn't know there was legislation under the ADA that makes sure people aren't denied jobs! Yet there is discrimination everywhere in hiring practices. Employers only want to hire people with a certain image, age, tone of voice, etc. Of course, the disabled person needs to do all they can to market themselves, but if you don't project the "right" image, you're not hired, period.

Last edited by sunni123; 05-11-2011 at 12:48 PM.

 
Old 05-11-2011, 12:55 PM   #6
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Re: Is being cross eyed a disability?

Some jobs are somewhat image dependent. If you are going to work at the office of a cosmetic surgeon who does facial surgery the right candidate would have to have a certain look. If you are going to work telesales you do have to show a certain tone, energy and approach. So when denied jobs for reasons like this it's not discrimination. Especially if, for example, the job description requires "clear and friendly voice and tone" but in the interview the person whispers. Or "employees need be detail oriented" but in the interview the candidate can't list details of a certain task or job. Or "employees need be presentable and show consistent task focus" and then in the job interview they come disheveled and are looking at the ceiling when talking, can't answer the questions, talk too long on a subject, etc.

So the right image is key in a job interview and in job performance review on an ongoing basis. When I worked in insurance claims we frequently had to let people go during the probationary period if they weren't providing friendly service, retaining focus on their work, show consistent attendance and preferably arrive early and leave late, etc.
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Old 05-11-2011, 01:13 PM   #7
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Re: Is being cross eyed a disability?

I agree the right image is necessary and you can't make obvious mistakes, like not get to work on time or be rude to people. The more frustrating problem is subtle. What if you try to be friendly (and are), but your voice is a bit off in pitch, just slightly. Or it isn't smooth; your vocal chords are a bit messed up. Or you get to work on time, but you look a little too long at other people (or conversely, don't give enough eye-contact). Not looking at people at all would be considered rude in a workplace, but if you can't calibrate things perfectly, people won't hire you. If you don't have good skin or have the 'wrong' wrinkles, people won't hire you. There are some jobs where no image is required, but then they often require specialized skills, like computer work. When I was competing with the workforce, it was very hard because I felt like everyone looked better or was just a little smarter. Then there is the confidence issue- you can try to act confident but if you don't feel it, it will show. So you can't even fake it. But in order to get confidence you need a little evidence that you are ok.

 
Old 05-11-2011, 01:26 PM   #8
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Re: Is being cross eyed a disability?

As long as your able to wear glassess that improve your ability to see and function in a job to maintain a substantel gainful activity you will be fine to work. If accomadations need to be made for work then they need to provide it.
I recently found out that I need glassess , both for seeing far away and near sighted. But I cannot afford them. It takes me a while to use a computor because their are toomany mispelled words, I have to go back and spell the words again, even though I know I can fix the computor to zoom in or make the letters bigger.
I have not heard of anybody recieing disabilty for being crossed eyed , but know people who have vision loss that is so great they can barely see, then they are able to obtain disability if they have done everything possible to correct their vision.
Also if the person has other conditions besides this one and it is severe enough to affect any job opportunity's then Yes they could try and apply dor disability.

Last edited by mscat40; 05-11-2011 at 01:28 PM.

 
Old 05-11-2011, 04:40 PM   #9
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Re: Is being cross eyed a disability?

Yeah, it is like age and race discrimination are against the law but employers do it all the time. Proving it is a different story tho. Honesty, what employer is going to want to hire most of us for example if SSA ever deems us not disabled anymore. I am just being realistic. This is why most ppl who get on disability just try to stay on it whether or not their medical condition improves. If you are over 45 and disabled for a few years, get better, and decide to re-enter workforce, altho not impossible, it is going to be really hard IMO.

 
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Old 05-11-2011, 04:48 PM   #10
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Re: Is being cross eyed a disability?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natalia19 View Post
I'm 18 and I've had crossed eyes (strabismus) my whole life. Yesterday a friend told me that I can't get fired from my job because I have a disability. I was like, no I don't! And I had a big argument.

I don't see how its a disability if I can see good without glasses. Both of my eyes have good vision. Its just that because my eyes cross so much my brain ignores the eye that I am not focusing with. If I look to my right, my left eye will cross and if I look to my left, my right eye will cross in. If I focus straight ahead with one eye, the other eye crosses. Basically I use both eyes, just not at once.


Does this make me disabled?? I think people underestimate my vision because of my condition. They look at my eyes and assume I can't see. I might just be because my eyes are severely crossed, which is less common than slightly crossed eyes.

So are crossed eyes a disability?
Is is not a disability unless it impairs your ability to work. This is true for all medical conditions. Some ppl can work with a mental condition depression while another person might be totally disabled by the same condition on the exact same medications.

 
Old 05-11-2011, 05:46 PM   #11
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Re: Is being cross eyed a disability?

When seeking a job, during an interview or introduction to a job lead, be the first to evaluate the other person's reaction. No problem saying "as you can see I have crossed eyes but thankfully it doesn't impair my vision at all". You can put the other person at ease right away by saying something like that. There are people with crossed eyes who do have visual impairment. So it's okay to put the other person at ease.

In the recent royal wedding one of the young bridesmaids was noted to have had crossed eyes since birth. I believe I read that since it did not impair her vision, beyond her sometimes needing to squint, her parent chose not to do surgery so as to avoid possible complications.
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Last edited by SpineAZ; 05-11-2011 at 05:48 PM.

 
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