The U.K. Equality act 2010 introduces a notion called “indirect discrimination.” Basically it’s things that one does that disproportionately affects individuals possessing a protected characteristic (the British equivalent of a protected class) over those who don’t. An example has previously been given of a restaurant which admits both men and women, but only maintains urinals without seated toilets/stalls.

There is also a duty on service providers to make reasonable adjustments in their offering of their services that would equalise the playing field between disabled and non disabled users of their service at the service provider’s own expense. This can be anything from building a wheelchair ramp in their entrance to exercising greater patience and understanding in the application of any punitive policies as it applies equally to physical and mental disabilities alike.

Does anything like either of these mechanisms exist in the anywhere U.S., whether federally, or as a matter of state law?

1 Answer 1


Question 1

Does anything like “indirect discrimination” ... exist in the U.S.?

In the U.S., "indirect discrimination" is known as "disparate impact."

Question 2

Does anything like... the “duty to make reasonable adjustments” exist in the U.S.?

The Americans With Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination based on disability. This includes a requirement in "public accomodations" to "make reasonable modifications in policies, practices, and procedures that deny equal access to individuals with disabilities."

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