**COVID-19 Pandemic Related Accommodation Requests**
If you fall into the CDC-defined category of people who are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19 due to a serious underlying medical condition (see: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/people-at-higher-risk.html), you may submit a confidential request for a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended, by submitting these COVID-19/Pandemic-specific forms through email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The process for these requests will generally follow the process outlined below for Standard Workplace Accommodation Requests.
**Standard Workplace Accommodation Requests**
Employees seeking workplace accommodations will use the following procedure:
1) Request: The employee is responsible for requesting an ADA workplace accommodation for his or her disability by completing a Reasonable Accommodation Request Form and submitting the request to the Office of Human Resources.
2) Discussion: Following the receipt of the completed request form, an HR staff member will meet with the employee to acknowledge the request and explain the accommodation process. The staff member will provide a Medical Information Request and Verification Form as appropriate, along with their Position Description, to their Physician. It is the employee’s responsibility to return this completed form to HR.
3) Documenting the Disability: HR will conduct an analysis of the impairment eligibility to determine what type of documentation is necessary to verify the disability. This may vary depending on the nature and extent of the disability and the accommodation requested. It is the employee’s responsibility to provide any requested documentation. In some cases it may be necessary to discuss the nature of the disability with the employee’s physician to address the request. If deemed necessary, HR can request independent medical evaluation of the employee’s disability. In the event that the university deems it necessary to obtain a second medical opinion, the department will bear the cost of obtaining the second opinion. The request will be evaluated after all the documentation has been submitted by the employee to HR.
4) Analysis of Job/Position or Performance of Job Responsibilities: The following will be considered by HR in determining a reasonable accommodation:
- What are the essential functions of the employee’s position?
- What are the responsibilities that employees in the same position have performed in the past?
- How does the disability affect the performance of the essential functions?
- What are the problems posed by the workplace barrier?
- Is there a record of any disciplinary actions that may be related to the disability or the request for an accommodation?
5) Analysis of Accommodation Request: Appropriate accommodations are determined following an individualized assessment of each request. HR will consult with appropriate offices in considering the needs or requests for reasonable accommodations. Among factors considered in determining reasonable accommodations for employees are:
- What accommodation has been requested and what is the duration of the requested accommodation?
- How will the accommodation affect the employee’s performance of duties?
- How will the accommodation affect the department’s effective operation, including the effect on responsibilities of other employees, and university policies and practices?
- What is the cost of the accommodation?
- Are there safety and security issues that need to be considered?
- What are other options for accommodations?
6) Notification and Implementation of Accommodation under ADA: HR shall provide the employee with written notification of the determination within thirty (30) days of reviewing the completed request (including the requested medical documentation) absent extenuating circumstances. If the determination includes an accommodation, the notice will also include the expected implementation date. If a situation should arise whereby HR requires additional time to review and assess a request or to provide accommodation, HR shall provide the employee with a written notification of the status of the request and the proposed date of determination. Once the reasonable accommodation is determined, written notification will be sent to the employee and the supervisor indicating the recommended accommodation. Once the employee and the supervisor have been notified of the determined accommodation, a meeting will be held for the employee, supervisor, and a staff member of HR to discuss the details of the implementation.