That is in fact the case ... at least in the public service.
If you go on maternity leave and have a child you can return to your substantive position.
I have no problem with that.
I do have a problem with the EEO taking umbrage with qualification requirements for specific positions in either public or private employment.
Minimal levels of KSEQ (knowledge, skills, experience, qualifications)
are usually defined in the JDF (Job description file / format) for any given position and the role of the selection panel is to shortlist using specific selection criteria based on these.
Interviews are a way to find the ebest applicant of those shortlisted based on a behavioral interview format, which contains questions usually related to the SC used for the written application.
Referee checks are usually a final way to clarify the best of those interviewed.
You either need to have the required quals or look elswhere for a fit with what you have.
In saying that, research shows employees with disabilities usually have a stronger work ethic, are more loyal, and take less sick leave.
We have several employees who have disabilities and they are all great workers.