The New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJ Rev. Stat. Sec. 10:5-1 et seq.) prohibits employment practices that discriminate against individuals on the basis of a disability. The law defines “disability” broadly; for practical purposes, most physical or mental impairments that can be demonstrated through accepted medical or psychological data would qualify as disabilities under the law. Certain diseases, including acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection are expressly included in the definition of “disability.” The law also prohibits employment discrimination based on an atypical hereditary cellular or blood trait. The law covers all employers, public and private, regardless of size, and also covers discriminatory acts by employment agencies and labor unions.
Like the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the New Jersey law bars an employer from making a decision regarding hiring, promotion, job duties, compensation, or any other condition of employment on the basis of an individual's actual or perceived disability. Furthermore, employers must offer reasonable accommodations to allow protected individuals to continue working as long as they can perform the essential functions of their jobs. Employers are also prohibited from discriminating against individuals on the basis of genetic information, refusal to submit to a genetic test, or refusal to disclose test results (NJ Rev. Stat. Sec. 10:5-12).