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Introduction

Sections 501 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 require federal agencies to provide reasonable accommodation to employees and applicants for employment who have disabilities, unless the accommodation would impose an undue hardship.  Executive Order 13164 requires federal agencies to establish effective written procedures for handling reasonable accommodation requests by employees and applicants for employment.  The Access Board is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to its employees and applicants for employment and has adopted these procedures to ensure that reasonable accommodation requests are handled promptly and fairly.

Employees and Applicants

In this section, the word “you” refers to employees and applicants for employment.  This section tells you how to request a reasonable accommodation and how your request will be handled.  This section also discusses medical information, reassignment, and your rights if your reasonable accommodation request is denied.  Reasonable accommodation and other key terms are defined at the end of this document.

Requesting reasonable accommodation…

If medical information is necessary…

If you need to be reassigned…

If your reasonable accommodation request is denied…

Supervisors and Hiring Coordinator

In this section, the word “you” refers to supervisors and the hiring coordinator.  This section tells you how to handle reasonable accommodation requests.  This section also discusses medical information, reassignment, denial of reasonable accommodation requests, and record keeping.

Responding to reasonable accommodation requests

If medical information is necessary…

If an employee needs reassignment…

If you deny a reasonable accommodation request…

Record keeping…

Definitions

Reasonable Accommodation:
Any change in the work environment or in the way things are customarily done that would enable a qualified individual with a disability to be considered for a position, to perform the essential functions of a position, and to enjoy equal benefits and privileges of employment.
Individual with a Disability:
An individual who has (a) a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities of such individual (such as walking, talking, seeing, hearing, or learning); a record of such an impairment (has a history of, or has been misclassified as having a disability); or being regarded as having such an impairment that is not both transitory and minor.
Qualified Individual with a Disability:
An individual with a disability is qualified if he or she satisfies the skills, experience, and other job-related requirements for a position; and can perform the essential functions of the position, with or without reasonable accommodation.
Essential Functions:
Those job duties that are so fundamental to the position that the individual cannot do the job without being able to perform them.  A function is essential if the position exists specifically to perform that function; there are a limited number of other employees who can perform the function; or the function is specialized and the individual is hired based on his or her ability to perform the function.
An action requiring significant difficulty or expense.
Undue hardship is determined on a case-by-case basis, considering the nature and cost of the reasonable accommodation needed and the impact of the reasonable accommodation on the operations of the agency.

Dissemination

These procedures will be made available on the Access Board’s intranet and internet site, and copies will be provided in alternative formats upon request.