5 Recommendations To Make Your Workplace ADA Compliant

Disability Pride month occurs every July in the United States as a way to celebrate the passing of the landmark 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). In honor of Disability Pride Month, we are sharing five recommendations you can implement for an ADA-compliant workplace! 

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the ADA prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in several areas, including employment, transportation, public accommodations, communications, and access to state and local government programs and services. ADA compliance is mandatory by federal law and failure to comply can result in fines, lawsuits, and bad publicity.

This post will explore important considerations and actions you can take as an employer to create an ADA-compliant organization.

5 Strategies to Become an ADA-Compliant Workplace

Title 1 of the ADA prevents employers with 15 or more employees, including state and local governments, from discriminating against qualified employees with disabilities. Below, we share five strategies that can help you become an ADA-compliant workplace.

1. Avoid Making Assumptions About Disabilities

Did you know that over 60 million adults in the United States have some form of disability? Do not assume that someone does or does not have a disability based on outward appearances. Nearly 11% of adults with functional disabilities have serious difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions. This is just one example of a disability that cannot be seen. 

2. Be Prepared to Make Reasonable Accommodations for Applicants and Employees

A reasonable accommodation is an adjustment or modification made to standard employment processes so that an individual with disabilities has an equal opportunity experience. Processes eligible for accommodations could include:

  • Your application process
  • Your interview and hiring process
  • Your onboarding process

Reasonable accommodations do not have to be excessively expensive, time-consuming, or difficult. They could be as simple as adapting a paper application to be accessible online, or vice versa.

3. Ensure Your Digital Assets Are Up to Date

In 2010, the Department of Justice published updated regulations, called the ADA Standards for Accessible Design, that include accessibility guidelines for websites. Under these regulations, your website should be perceivable, functional, understandable, and robust. 

The following are website recommendations that will help your site be ADA compliant:

  • Craft an ‘alt tag’ for all image, video, or audio files. An alt tags allows a user with a disability to read or hear descriptions of content they might not otherwise be able to see or hear. Here’s how to craft a great alt tag
  • Create text transcripts for video and audio content. The transcript will help a hearing-impaired user enjoy the content.
  • Identify the site’s language in the header code. This makes it easier for those using text readers and allows the site to be read in the intended language.

It’s also important to make sure the layout of your website is clean and easy to navigate. 

4. Communicate Standardized Policies Across Your Organization

By setting standardized ADA policies with your employees, you give your organization the best chance at successfully handling each relevant ADA compliance case. 

To get started, ask yourself, “What is my organizational process for creating reasonable accommodations?” and “Where will I document these accommodations?” 

You'll want to ensure easy access to these policies for your employees.

5. Refer to Trusted Resources for Information You Do Not Have

If you are unsure how to handle a situation, consider referring to official resources for guidance.

Provide a list of resources and a brief description of each for employers. You can find countless helpful resources at: 

ADA Compliance Resources for Individuals with Disabilities

At Inova Staffing, we want to ensure that each of our employees and applicants is fully aware of their rights. To guide you through the hiring process, we’ve compiled a list of resources. Whether you’re a job seeker or an employer, these free resources are worth a read!

ADA compliance in the workplace is one of the most important initiatives you can focus on as an employer. To recruit and retain talent you must care for your employees, regardless of any disabilities they may have.  And should you need assistance, the team at Inova Staffing is available to help you navigate the process of becoming a compliant workplace. 

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