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Accessibility Resource Center

ADA Information for Managers and Supervisors

Under the Fair Employment and Housing Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act, a manager or supervisor of an employee with a qualified disability has the following legal responsibilities:

  1. Engage in the interactive process in a timely manner, which includes:
  • Refer employee to the Accessibility Resource Center (ARC) in the Student Services Center room 170, extension 5959, or the Employee Leaves and Workers’ Compensation Unit in Kendall Hall room 118, extension 4670, when an employee approaches you regarding a disability or medical condition, requests an employment accommodation, or you become aware through a third party or by observation that the employee has an impairment that is interfering with his or her ability to perform the job;
  • Refrain from requesting and accepting medical documentation from an employee who has a disability or medical condition or requests an employment accommodation;
  • Consult with ARC regarding any undue hardship, business necessities, and the effectiveness of proposed accommodations in enabling the employee to perform the essential job functions; and
  • Oversee the implementation and maintenance of the accommodations approved by the ADA Coordinator, if any.
  1. Maintain information relating to the employee’s accommodations and status as an employee with a disability strictly confidential.

The collaboration of the employee’s manager or supervisor in the interactive process is critical to ARC and the Employee Leaves and Workers’ Compensation Unit.

Note:  It is the responsibility of the employee to request employment accommodations through ARC, or through the employee’s supervisor. Managers or supervisors; however, are also responsible for invoking the interactive process, as stated by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC): “While the employee is generally responsible for requesting accommodations, an employer should ask whether one is needed without being asked if it “(1) knows that the employee has a disability, (2) knows, or has reason to know, that the employee is experiencing workplace problems because of the disability, and (3) knows, or has reason to know, that the disability prevents the employee from requesting a reasonable accommodation.”  If the employee states that the employee does not need an accommodation, the employer has fulfilled its duty to participate in the interactive process. – Thompson’s ADA Compliance Guide, July 2008.

For more information, please contact the ADA Coordinator at the Accessibility Resource Center in SSC 170, or by calling extension 5959, or refer to the ADA and Reasonable Accommodation Handbook.