Workplace Accessibility

Staff, faculty, and student employees should have equal opportunities to contribute in meaningful ways regardless of disability. The process of seeking reasonable adjustments on the basis of specific impairment should be clear and easy to follow. Professional development opportunities should be maximized to promote an understanding of accessibility across units.

In the work environment:

  • Employees need to know how to request reasonable accommodation
  • Supervisors should be comfortable providing reasonable adjustments
  • Supervisors should instill commitment to accessibility through professional development

Employers and Hiring Authorities should be thinking about:

  • Recruiting quality employees with disabilities
  • Retaining employees who acquire disability
  • Working to instill campus-wide commitment to accessibility by:
    • Requiring accessibility related training relevant to job
    • Promoting participation in awareness building efforts

Staff and Faculty might be thinking about:

  • Physical accessibility of workplace
  • Better (more efficient or more effective) ways of using the computer
  • Requests for disability related work adjustments

 

Hiring Authority

UAA is dedicated to attracting and retaining a workforce consisting of highly qualified and diverse individuals. The way we write our job descriptions and advertise our postings matters. This means we need to:

  • Recruit and retain employees with disabilities
  • Recruit and retain employees who understand accessibility issues
  • Ensure employees are provided with appropriate professional development opportunities
  • Make sure employees feel comfortable disclosing disability

Clearly Identify Essential Job Functions

There are often multiple ways to get a job done. Try to stay focused on what needs to be done, not necessarily the exact manner in which it may occur. For example, written reports may be created by typing, but could also created by using voice recognition software. There are often creative approaches that can help make sure qualified applicants with disabilities are able to receive appropriate adjustments to complete all essential tasks in efficient ways.

Include Knowledge of Accessibility in Relevant Recruitment

It is important to look for knowledge of, and experience with implementing, best practices. For example:

  • Knowledge of 508 or WCAG standards - in positions responsible for maintaining websites
  • Experience with accessible document design - in positions responsible for creating handouts, forms, etc
  • Familiarity with ADAAG - in positions responsible for designing physical spaces
  • Understanding of accommodation process for most positions

Provide Professional Development Opportunities

Individuals need to know about best practices if they are tasked with:

  • Maintaining department websites
  • Creating newsletters, forms, or other materials that will be shared or distributed online
  • Planning events
  • Configuring spaces
  • Developing or facilitating courses or workshops

Related Resources