ADA Frequently Asked Questions
What is considered a disability under the ADA?
A disability is a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, having a record of such impairment, or being regarded as having such an impairment.
What is a Major Life Activity?
MLA’s are activities that most people in the general population can perform with little or no difficulty. It includes activities such as “Caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, sitting, reaching, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, interacting with others, and working; and the operation of a major bodily function….”,
What does substantially limit mean?
Substantial limitations limit the ability of an individual to perform a major life activity as compared to most people in the general population.
What is a reasonable accommodation?
A reasonable accommodation is any modification or adjustment, absent undue hardship, to the workplace that enables a qualified individual with a disability to complete the essential functions of his/her job. Many different factors go into determining if a reasonable accommodation would cause undue hardship. You can read more about undue hardship on the EEOC website.
What are some examples of reasonable accommodations?
Changes to a Work Environment: assistive technology, hand rails, light vs. sound alarms, air purifiers
Changes to Schedules/Procedures: altered work hour and/or days, additional training, modified process for completing a task, change in communication methods
Additional job training: job coaches
Assistance with mobility: mobility devices
Is my department required to agree to the accommodation?
The department is responsible to provide reasonable accommodation to eliminate the impact of the disability impeding the employee’s ability to perform the job. This accommodation must be effective but it may not be the specific accommodation the employee or the Treating Healthcare Practitioner requested.
Who is responsible for the expense associated with a reasonable accommodation?
In most cases, the employee’s department is responsible for the cost of the accommodation.
What if the disability impacting the job cannot be accommodated?
If it is determined that reasonable accommodation is not possible, a referral status may be given to the employee for a limited time, to other positions of equal or lower pay grades for which the employee is qualified.
I think I’m being discriminated against because of my disability. What should I do?
You have several options if you think you’re experiencing discrimination related to a disability. Your HR rep is one of the best places to start if you think your supervisor or co-workers are discriminating against you. You may also call FSDS if you aren’t able to talk to your HR Rep. If your HR Rep or FSDS isn’t able to resolve your concern, you may contact EEOC. EEOC enforces that part of the ADAA that prohibits job discrimination. For information on reaching your local office, please call 800.669.4000 (voice), 800.669.6820 (TTY).
I need special parking due to my disability. What department do I contact?
University Parking and Transportation. For more information go to the Parking and Transportation webpage. Information about the Bionic Bus and Cambus services are also provided.
Page last updated December 2012