Related topics

Supreme Court Excerpts

January 8, 2002

Excerpts from the Supreme Court’s unanimous decision Tuesday that narrowed the reach of the Americans With Disabilities Act:

``The central inquiry must be whether the claimant is unable to perform the variety of tasks central to most people’s daily lives, not whether the claimant is unable to perform the tasks associated with her specific job.″


``The manual tasks unique to any particular job are not necessarily important parts of most people’s lives. As a result, occupation-specific tasks may have only limited relevance to the manual task inquiry. ... The (lower) court, therefore, should not have considered respondent’s inability to do such manual work in her specialized assembly-line job as sufficient proof that she was substantially limited in performing manual tasks.″


``When it enacted the ADA in 1990, Congress found that `some 43 million have one or more physical or mental disabilities.′ If Congress intended everyone with a physical impairment that precluded the performance of some isolated, unimportant or particularly difficult manual task to qualify as disabled, the number of disabled Americans would surely have been much higher.″

Update hourly