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Disability Discrimination

Disability Discrimination

Discrimination based on disability is illegal in Minnesota. Under the Minnesota Human Rights Act, disability is a “protected class.”

And it is illegal to treat you differently because of your disability in:

  • Employment
  • Housing
  • Public accommodations
  • Public services
  • Education
  • Credit
  • Business

These are called “protected areas.” There are some exceptions about how disability is covered under the Minnesota Human Rights Act.

What is a disability?

A person has a disability if:

  • He or she has a physical, sensory—blindness or deafness, for example—or mental impairment. This impairment “materially interferes” with—it largely gets in the way of—a major life activity; or
  • He or she has a record of this kind of impairment; or
  • He or she is recognized as having this kind of impairment.

Not every injury or illness amounts to “disability” under the Minnesota Human Rights Act.

Legislation Expands Rights of People Who Use Service Animals

During the 2013 legislative session, the Minnesota legislature amended the Minnesota Human Rights Act (MHRA) to broaden the rights of individuals who use service animals in public establishments under the MHRA and to ensure that the MHRA was consistent with federal law, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The law goes into effect August 1, 2013.

Learn more about public accommodations and service animal laws.

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