Handicap Rights: Even AIDS seems covered

Even AIDS seems covered

The issue at hand was tuberculosis, but the question in many minds was AIDS. In a decision with important implications for employees and schoolchildren with serious illnesses, the U.S. Supreme Court last week ruled that a federal law against handicap discrimination can protect those with contagious diseases.

The 7-to-2 decision involved the case of Gene Arline, who in 1979 was dismissed as a third-grade teacher after she suffered her third flare-up of tuberculosis symptoms in two years. The school board in Nassau County, Fla., said it feared she could spread the disease. Bitter "after what they did to me," Arline sued,...

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