Office of the Vice President for
Administration and Finance
SECTION: HUMAN RESOURCES INDEX: C-31
SUBJECT: REASONABLE JOB MODIFICATION FOR EMPLOYEES WITH DISABILITIES
The University of Houston –Victoria (UHV) recognizes the importance of the federal Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 and the state Texas Commission on Human Rights Act (TCHR Act). The University has developed this policy and procedures for supervisors and qualified individuals with disabilities to assist with a job modification request and, when appropriate, provide a reasonable job modification.
It is the policy of the University that all qualified individuals with disabilities are afforded equal employment opportunity in compliance with federal and state laws. The University, in keeping with its values and goals, provides reasonable accommodations to individuals with disabilities. Individuals shall not be subjected to retaliation for having utilized or having assisted others with the process of requesting a reasonable job modification.
Person with a Disability – Is an individual with a physical or mental impairment who, as a result of such impairment, is substantially limited in performing one or more of life’s major activities. This includes individuals who not only have the impairment, but also individuals who have a “record of” such impairment or have been “regarded as” having such impairment.
Qualified Person with a Disability – Is an individual who meets the definition of a person with a disability and who also possesses the skill, experience, educational and licensing requirements of the position of which s/he is currently an incumbent and who, with or without a reasonable accommodation, can perform the essential functions of that position.
Essential Functions – Job tasks that are fundamental, not marginal, to the performance of the position.
Reasonable Job Modification – A reasonable adjustment in the work environment or in the manner a job is customarily performed that enables a qualified person with a disability to perform the essential functions of that position, so long as it does not create an undue hardship or burden to the University.
Major Life Activity – Functions include, but are not limited to, caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, eating, standing, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, lifting, bending, and working. This list is not exhaustive. 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.
Retaliation - Retaliatory actions taken against an individual as a result of that person's seeking redress under the applicable ADAAA procedures is prohibited. Such an action shall be regarded as a separate and distinct cause for complaint.
Undue Hardship – The accommodation required is too difficult or too costly in relation to the size, resources, nature and structure of the employer’s operations.
Direct Threat – A qualification standard that protects employees from significant risk, or substantial harm of the health and safety of the individual or others that cannot be reduced or eliminated by a reasonable accommodation.
The Director, Human Resources/Affirmative Action serves as the ADAAA Coordinator for the University. The ADAAA Coordinator is responsible for ensuring that these procedures are properly implemented and followed.
Records or information obtained by the Director HR/AA as part of the job modification process that reflect diagnosis, evaluation, or treatment of an employee's medical or mental health condition are confidential and shall be maintained by the HR Department in a separate file. Such records shall be shared with only those University employees who have a need to know in order to implement the job modification process; and shall not be released except as required by law.
Request – A request for a reasonable job modification must begin with the employee. The employee must obtain and complete the Request for Job Modification form, Appendix A , and submit it to his/her supervisor and the ADAAA Coordinator.
Medical Certification – The ADAAA Coordinator, in conjunction with the employee’s supervisor, shall provide the employee with a copy of his/her job description and a Medical Certification form, Appendix B. The Medical Certification form, to be completed by the employee’s licensed health care practitioner, must contain a diagnosis, restrictions related to the employee’s essential job functions, and suggestions for any reasonable job modification. The employee’s supervisor shall forward the employee’s Request for Job Modification form and the Medical Certification form to the ADAAA Coordinator. The ADAAA Coordinator and the employee’s supervisor will review the forms to continue with the reasonable job modification process. The employee’s Request for Job Modification, Medical Certification and other related documents shall be housed with the OAA/EEO.
Non-receipt of Documentation. If the OAA/EEO does not receive the required documentation and information from the employee within ten working days of being informed of a disability by the employee, it will notify the employee and request that the employee submit the required documentation, including the Request for Job Modification form and the Medical Certification form, to the employee’s supervisor and the ADAAA Coordinator within ten working days. If the ADAAA Coordinator does not receive the required information within ten working days of this notification to the employee, the request for accommodation will be cancelled for lack of necessary information.
Reasonable Job Modification Review – Once all required documentation has been provided to the ADAAA Coordinator, the employee’s supervisor and the ADAAA Coordinator shall determine if the employee’s request for job modification is reasonable. The documentation must be complete, clear and consistent. If found to be reasonable, the requested job modification will be implemented within a timely manner. If not found to be reasonable due to undue hardship or direct threat, other alternatives will be considered, if appropriate.
If all parties including the employee agree with the reasonable job modification selected by the employee’s supervisor and the ADAAA Coordinator, all parties will sign a Job Modification Agreement form, Appendix C.
Pursuance of Complaint within the University
An employee who believes that s/he has been denied a reasonable job modification, discriminated against on the basis of a disability, or retaliated against due to a job modification request may make a complaint to the Director, HR/AA pursuant to the Grievance Procedures Relating to Title IX and other Discrimination Complaints. The complaint should be made as soon as possible after actions that are believed to be discriminatory have occurred, but not later than sixty working days after occurrence.
Pursuance of Complaints Outside the University
This policy does not preclude anyone from pursuing a complaint of discrimination with external agencies.
Dr. Don Smith Date
Next review date: May 2013
Origination: Human Resources/Affirmative Action
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