At the application stage, reasonable accommodation may include adjusting the process to enable a qualified applicant with a disability to be considered for the position. At recruitment and employment stages, this may include making available special treatment or facilities, provided that by doing so, the person with a disability is fully capable of undertaking the task involved in the job. It is unlawful to reject a candidate for employment just because of a disability. The employer’s duty to accommodate the employee applies both to the physical features of the workplace and to all aspects of employment and employment practices such as recruitment, training, career development and retention.
Examples of reasonable accommodations include: rearranging office furniture; installing a higher than average desk for a staff member using a wheelchair; adapting standard equipment or providing something specially designed, adjusting or modifying tests and training materials; considering alternative ways of accomplishing a given task or objective not taken into account during the preparation of the job description or selection criteria; providing company information in appropriate formats and assisting in communication, where necessary. The individual with the disability may be the best source of what, if any, accommodation is required or alternatively an occupational health specialist. In accommodating an individual with a disability an employer is not required to: eliminate an essential function of the job; provide personal use items if they are also needed off the job, such as eyeglasses and hearing aids; tolerate disruptive behaviour or poor performance by a person with a disability. The Department of Social Protection offer a number of grants for employers to assist in this area.
Wednesday, 25 March 2009