Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Health Related Sciences

First Advisor

Brian T. McMahon


ABSTRACT AN ANALYSIS OF ADA TITLE I ALLEGATIONS OF WORKPLACE DISCRIMINATION AS FILED WITH THE EEOC BY PERSONS WITH MENTAL ILLNESS Jessica Erin Hurley A dissertation submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Health Related Sciences—Rehabilitation Leadership Virginia Commonwealth University, 2011 Dissertation Chair: Brian T. McMahon, Ph.D., CRC This study explores employment discrimination as experienced by persons with mental illness who filed allegations under Title I (the employment provisions) of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. The entire universe of employment discrimination allegations filed under Title I of the ADA from July 26, 1992 (its first effective date) until the present is maintained by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in a database named the Intermission System (IMS). This database contains over 2 million allegations of workplace discrimination filed not only under Title I of the ADA, but also under all statutes in its jurisdiction. From the IMS, two extractions containing ADA Title I allegations only and ranging from July 26,1992 through December 31, 2008 [the last date before the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) of 2008 went into effect] were made: the first including all Title I allegations for all impairments, not just mental illness (402,291); and the second containing only those Title I allegations filed by persons with mental illness (56,846 total: depression (25,375); unknown mental illness (11,977); anxiety disorder (10,370); bipolar disorder (7,675); and schizophrenia 1,449). Using nonparametric tests of proportion, each group of allegations is compared to the balance of mental illness allegations that is left once the group of allegations is removed. In addition, each group individually, as well as the complete group of all mental illness allegations, is evaluated with an exploratory technique called the Exhaustive Chi Squared Interaction Detector. Lastly, findings are provided and implications for employees, employers, rehabilitation professionals, policy makers, and future researchers are discussed.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

December 2011