Personal Advocacy Tips When Looking for Jobs

Being your own personal advocate as a person with a disability is the best way to make sure you get what you deserve, both legally and ethically. Here are some personal advocacy tips when looking for jobs that can help you navigate these new waters.


Getting a new job is exciting! You are about to venture into a new journey, and that in itself is exciting, but can also cause some nervous tension. One thing that helps to calm this anxiety is to know your rights when it comes to finding a job. Being your own personal advocate as a person with a disability is the best way to make sure you get what you deserve, both legally and ethically. Here are some personal advocacy tips when looking for jobs that can help you navigate these new waters.

Know the Federal Laws

There are many federal laws protecting people with disabilities, including the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. These laws have been amended as of 2009, so knowing what each says is important to make sure you are treated the way you deserve.

Understand that State Laws vary from State to State

The law in one state may vary from the law in a different state, so knowing the rules specific to your job’s location is extremely important. What may be protected in one state may not be in another state. Look up these rules online and get to know how they protect you, and you’ll have the best chance for a successful hiring experience.

Be Informed of Where to Turn for Questions

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, or the EEOC, is the federal agency responsible for setting standards and investigating complaints against employers. The Commission has many resources available on its website and through its regional offices that you (or your employer) can use to ensure fair decision-making when it comes to your new position. You are encouraged to look through these at any time on the EEOC website.

These tips will help you stay informed and in control of your job experience, so take the reins and get the job of your dreams, fairly! Are you unsure if you are ready for a job, and need more of a transition into that life stage? Come visit Life College in Tustin, CA, and learn more about our Transition to Independent Living and Employment program. This program helps young adults transition into independence, and assists those with autism, Fragile X, brain injury, other developmental delays, and more. We would love to help you learn more about our community, curriculum, and program, so contact us today! We look forward to speaking with you.

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