Colorado Civil Rights Commission v. N. Washington Fire Protection District
In Colorado Civil Rights Commission v. N. Washington Fire Protection District, 772 P.2d 70 (1989), the Colorado Supreme Court held that applicants for firefighter positions could invoke the protection of state law against disability discrimination.
Some of the applicants had prior orthopedic injuries that were not currently disabling, but which the employer perceived as making the applicants ineligible.
The Colorado court said that "the District claims that it did not treat the applicants as being substantially limited in one or more of their major life activities, but rather as being limited only with regard to specific job-related functions and risks of fighting fires. We find this argument irrelevant to the question of whether an applicant is handicapped . . . by virtue of an erroneous perception of handicap." 772 P.2d at 78.