Reasonable accommodation for job applicants
The ADA protects both job applicants and employees with disabilities. During the application process, employers cannot discriminate against qualified applicants with disabilities.
Applicants have a right to request a reasonable accommodation to participate in the interview process. Employers cannot refuse to hire someone because of their disability or their need for a reasonable accommodation. There are many things that employers can offer to ensure that the interview process is accessible. The EEOC offers the following examples:
- Providing written materials in accessible formats
- Providing readers or sign language interpreters
- Ensuring that all portions of the recruitment and interview process are completed in locations which are accessible
- Providing or modifying equipment or devices
- Adjusting or modifying application policies and procedures
In addition, employers are required to allow for extra time or an alternative format in testing if a test is required as part of the application or interview process. Employers do not have to provide accommodations that would cause an undue hardship. It will be important, however, to look for an alternative accommodation that is both reasonable and effective for the applicant.