To bolster this interpretation of the CFEPA, the court looks at cases that have applied the law, finding that they did not look to the limitation of life activities that is required in the narrower view espoused by the ADA. Consequently, the court rules that using the ADA to determine the CFEPA claim was erroneous.
With regards to the second question, the court looks at the language of the statute, where there is nothing to say that Beason can bring a claim for perceived physical disability discrimination. The court also looks at legislative history, which demonstrates that in the case of other anti-discriminatory statutes, there is language prohibiting discrimination based on a perception (as opposed to just discrimination based on something that is in fact there). The court views this as the legislature intending not to allow a claim for discrimination based on the perception that one is disabled and interprets the statute as such. Furthermore, the court finds no persuasive case law supporting Beason and rules against him, upholding the district courts decision.
The statutes that comprise the CFEPA, in particular Connecticut General Statute Section 46a-60, prohibit discriminatory employment practices.
Part 1 of that statute is of relevance to Beason v. United Technologies because it explicitly prohibits an employer from refusing to employ or discharging someone because he or she has a physical or mental disability. In defining disability, the related statute at Section 46a-51 has the applicable definitions that are relevant to determining what is and is not a disability.
The statute at Section 46a-60 of the Connecticut General Statutes also enumerates a number of other ways an employer is prohibited from discriminating against its employees. This statute is aimed at avoiding unfair treatment of employees, much like the rest of the CFEPA that demonstrates, in the name of the act, a desire by the Connecticut legislature to define fair employment practices. 46a-60 defines other violations such as firing someone because of genetic information, refusing to grant leave for pregnancy, and others. This statute is one of many in the category of state anti-discriminatory statutes, drawing similarities from those as well as related federal law.
Beason v. United Technologies, 337 F.3d 271 (2nd Cir. 2003)
Connecticut Fair Employment.