ADA and Reasonable Accommodations Policy

Date of Original Implementation:

Date of Last Revision: October 2011

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires employers to reasonably accommodate qualified individuals with disabilities. It is the policy of Cambridge College (the “College”) to comply with all federal and state laws concerning the employment of persons with disabilities.

It is the policy of Cambridge College not to discriminate against qualified individuals with disabilities in regard to application of procedures, hiring, advancement, discharge, compensation, training or other terms, conditions and privileges of employment.

Cambridge College will reasonably accommodate qualified individuals with a disability so that they can perform the essential functions of the employment position that such individual holds or desires. An individual who can be reasonably accommodated for a job without undue hardship will be given the same consideration for that position as any other applicant.

All employees are required to comply with safety standards. Applicants who pose a direct threat to the health or safety of other individuals in the workplace—when such threat cannot be eliminated by reasonable accommodation—will not be hired. Current employees who pose a direct threat to the health or safety of the other individuals in the workplace will be placed on appropriate leave until a College decision has been made in regard to the employee’s immediate employment situation to include the determination of an accommodation than can reasonably be made.

Definitions

As used in this policy, the following terms have the indicated meaning and will be adhered to in relation to the ADA policy.

“Disability” means a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities of the individual; a record of such an impairment; or being regarded as having such an impairment. Major life activities include the following:

In general—Major life activities include, but are not limited to, caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating and working.

Major bodily functions—A major life activity also includes the operation of a major bodily function, including, but not limited to, functions of the immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine and reproductive functions.

“Direct threat” means a significant risk to the health or safety of others that cannot be eliminated by reasonable accommodation.

“Qualified individual” means an individual who, with or without reasonable accommodation, can perform the essential functions of the employment position that such individual holds or desires.

“Reasonable accommodation” may include making existing facilities readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities, job restructuring, part-time or modified work schedules, reassignment to a vacant position, acquisition or modification of equipment or devices, appropriate adjustment or modifications of examinations, training materials or policies, the provision of qualified readers or interpreters, and other similar accommodations for individuals with disabilities.

“Undue hardship” means an action requiring significant difficulty or expense by the employer.

In determining whether an accommodation would impose an undue hardship on a covered entity, general factors to be considered include, but are not limited to:

The nature and cost of the accommodation.

The overall financial resources of the facility or facilities involved in the provision of the reasonable accommodation; the number of persons employed at such facility; the effect on expenses and resources or the impact of such accommodation upon the operation of the facility.

The overall financial resources of the College; the number, type and location of facilities.

The type of operations of the College, including the composition, structure and

functions of the workforce; relationship of the particular facility to the employer.

“Essential functions of the job” refers to those job activities that are determined by the College to be essential or core to performing the job; these functions cannot be modified.

Confidentiality

Information about an employee's documented disability will be kept in a file separate from the personnel file in HR. This file will be kept confidential to the extent practicable and will only be shared with individuals within the College to the extent allowed by law. However, once HR has been informed of an individual’s documented disability and request for accommodations, the person's supervisor, the union steward (if applicable) and those in the appropriate chain of authority may be notified and brought into the discussion so that any accommodation request can be coordinated through the supervisor and chain of authority.

Information about specific requests for accommodation from visitors may be kept in a file in the office of the College that receives the request. That office may consult with HR concerning reasonable accommodations. In addition, other appropriate offices within the College may be notified and brought into the discussion so that the accommodation request can be appropriately coordinated.

Requests for Accommodation

All employees seeking an accommodation of any kind must submit to HR a completed ADA Request for Reasonable Accommodation Form, available from HR, along with a current physician statement which includes: the nature of the impairment/disability, its severity, the duration; the activities limited by the impairment(s)/disability; the extent to which the impairment(s)/disability limits the employee’s ability to perform the essential duties/functions of the job along with recommendations for the reasonable accommodation. The College may require further testing or evaluation by qualified professionals to verify or further establish the impairment/disability and the need for accommodation. Upon HR’s’ receipt of the required documentation, the employee’s supervisor, the union steward (if applicable) and those in the appropriate chain of authority may be notified and brought into the discussion so that any accommodation request can be coordinated through the supervisor and chain of authority. Decisions regarding accommodations will generally be made within 10 business days of the receipt of the completed ADA Request for Reasonable Accommodation Form by HR.

The Human Resources (“HR”) department is responsible for implementing this policy, including resolution of reasonable accommodation, safety and undue hardship issues.

Individual Responsible for Revision and Implementation: Vice President for Finance and Administration and Director of Human Resources