News from NW ADA Center – Idaho
EMPLOYER'S OBLIGATIONS UNDER THE ADA
More than ever, now, during, and as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is vital that employers understand their obligations under the ADA to provide reasonable accommodations to any employee that might have a disability. A disability can be a physical condition or a mental impairment. The EEOC says that whenever an employer receives a request for a reasonable accommodation it has to “engage in the interactive process”.
What is the interactive process, though? Can an employer always know that an employee has requested an accommodation? Might an employer have to engage in the interactive process when the employee has not explicitly requested an accommodation? The ADA and the interactive process are often poorly understood and fraught with pitfalls.
Your local ADA Center can help you determine who is entitled to an accommodation. They can help you engage in the interactive process and when to initiate the discussion. COVID-19 has had an effect on the accommodation process, as we have all learned it can be possible to work effectively from home.
An employee with a disability must meet the same production standards, whether quantitative or qualitative, as a non-disabled employee in the same job. Before you address performance and conduct issues with an employee that has a disability, whether self-declared or not, it’s good to have an understanding of how the accommodation process works and what you, the employer, are required to do. Employers may have to provide a “reasonable accommodation” to enable an individual with a disability to meet a qualification standard that is job-related and consistent with business necessity or to perform the essential functions of the position.
For more information, contact the NW ADA Center ~ Idaho.
For more information about the ADA contact:
Dana Gover, MPA, and ACTCP Certification, ADA Training and Technical Assistance Coordinator
For more information about ADA Technical Assistance visit the NW ADA Center Idaho website: nwadacenter.org/idaho
Phone: Voice and Text 208-841-9422
Idaho Relay Service: 7