Reasonable Accommodation 101
Debbie Jones Disability Coordinator Lisa Kosh Regional Disability Coordinator
Overview Introduction to reasonable accommodation Review of federal regulations and definitions relating to reasonable accommodation Exclusions to federal laws Resources
What are they? Reasonable Accommodation
What is Reasonable Accommodation? Any change to the environment or in the way things are customarily done, that gives a person with a disability an opportunity to participate in the application process, job, program or activity that is equal to the opportunity given to similarly situated people without disabilities.
Reasonable Accommodation What Does it Involve? • Modification or adjustment of the following: • Job • Work • Academic Environment • Policy, program, or procedure • Providing appropriate service or product • Any other action that removes barriers for the person with a disability
Care Management versus Accommodation • Care Management • Accommodation
Examples of Job/Work Accommodations • Physical • Providing voice recognition software to enable a student to work on a computer • Blind • Providing alternative format (e.g. audio tapes or Braille) for a student that has a vision disability. • Hearing • Providing assistive listening device to a student that has a hearing disability
Examples of Changes to Policy/Procedure • Student with • Diabetes • LD • ADHD • Physical • Seizure Disorder • Schedule adjustment • Extended time • Test in private setting • Elevator Pass • Bottom Bunk
Examples of Reasonable Accommodation • Providing appropriate service: • Sign language interpreter for a student who is deaf • Mobility coach for a student who is blind
Care Management versus Accommodation • Program Instruction (08-26) • Reasonable Accommodation, Case Management, and CIS Disability Data
Who can request them? Reasonable Accommodation
Who Can Request Reasonable Accommodation? • Applicant with a disability who requests • accommodation to complete the admissions process • accommodation to participate in the Job Corps program • Student with a disability who requests • accommodation to participate in the Job Corps program or in work site activities • Applicant/student provides information indicating a disability is likely
Laws, Definitions, and Considerations What is a Disability
Federal Law WIA & Section 504 • Regulations implementing Section 188 of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) define disability
Disability Definition “A physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of a person’s major life activities.”
Physical Impairments • Neurological • Special sense organs • Cardiovascular • Digestive • Hemic and Lymphatic • Endocrine • Musculoskeletal • Respiratory (including speech organs) • Reproductive • Genitourinary • Skin
Mental Impairments • Any mental or psychological disorder, such as: • Intellectual disabilities • Organic brain syndrome • Emotional or mental illness • Specific learning disabilities
Examples of Physical and Mental Disabilities • Orthopedic • Visual • Speech • Hearing • Mental retardation • Specific learning disabilities • HIV • Cerebral palsy • Epilepsy • Muscular dystrophy • Multiple sclerosis • Cancer • Diabetes • Emotional illness • Drug addiction • Alcoholism
What is NOT Considered a Disability Homosexuality and bisexuality Normal pregnancy Environmental, cultural, and economic disadvantages (e.g. a prison record or a lack of education) Limited English proficiency/English as a second language (LEP/ELL)
Major Life Activities • What is a major life activity? An activity that is “of central importance to daily life”
Examples of Major Life Activities • Caring for one’s self • Performing manual tasks • Walking • Seeing • Hearing • Breathing • Learning
Substantial Limitations Not all limitations caused by a physical or mental impairment are “substantial” enough to constitute a disability; however, some impairments may be disabling for particular persons but not for others.
Substantial Limitations • Factors that constitute a substantial limitation: • Prevents the person from performing a major life activity that the average person can perform, or • Significantly restricts the person in performing such an activity (as compared to the average person)
Significant Restriction • The reviewer must determine if there is a significant restriction and if so how does the impairment restrict the following: • Conditionsunder which the person can perform the activity • Manner (way) in which she/he can perform the activity • Duration (length of time) for which she/he can perform the activity
Who is a person with a disability? Substance Abuse
Substance Addiction – Who is Protected? • Persons with a drug addiction diagnosis who have successfully completed a supervised drug rehabilitation program and who are no longer using drugs illegally • Persons with a drug addiction diagnosis who have been rehabilitated successfully in some other way and who are no longer using drugs illegally • Persons who have a drug addiction diagnosis, are currently participating in a supervised rehabilitation program, and who are no longer using drugs illegally
Documentation of Substance-related Disability • A center may request documentation that an applicant/student: • has a drug addiction diagnosis • has completed/is participating in a rehabilitation program or been rehabilitated successfully in some other way • is not currently using, and • onlyif an applicant/student is requesting to be considered a person with a drug addiction disability
Key Points to Know! An applicant who has a diagnosis of drug addiction but is not requesting disability/accommodation protections cannot be required to provide documentation that he/she is not currently using drugs. An applicant who indicates current/past casual drug use cannot be required to provide documentation that he/she is not currently using drugs.
Key Points to Know! A person who casually used drugs illegally in the past but did not become addicted is not an individual with a disability, and therefore is not protected from discrimination. Alcoholics, even those who are currently using alcohol, are protected by federal disability nondiscrimination laws from adverse actions taken because of the alcoholism itself..
The Exclusion • Addiction to illegal substances • The definition of “individual with a disability” under federal law explicably excludes persons who are currentlyengaging in the illegal use of drugs
Center Substance Use Policy • This exclusion means that even though a particular person’s drug addiction constitutes a disability it is not against the law to take adverse action against that person • to separate him/her from Job Corps, • or otherwise give him or her less favorable treatment than others - because of that drug addiction.
Practice Exercise Accommodation or Care management
Let’s Practice!Which Ones are Accommodations? Meet with the Center Mental Health Consultant 2x a week Use of headphones Voice recognition software Pencil grips Use of a computer Medication Check in with Health & Wellness Center daily
Regional Disability Coordinators • Lisa Kosh-Region 1 • firstname.lastname@example.org • Kimberly Jones-Regions 2, 5, 6 • email@example.com • Nikki Jackson-Region 3 • firstname.lastname@example.org • Sylvia Domagalski-Region 4 • email@example.com
Other Disability-Related Resources • VR • JC Program Instruction 99-03 • Disability Program Navigator Initiative • http://www.doleta.gov/disability/new_dpn_grants.cfm • Centers for Independent Living • http://www.ilru.org/html/publications/directory/index.html • RESNA Catalyst Project • http://resnaprojects.org/scripts/contacts.pl • Other State Disability Service Agencies