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Frequently Asked Questions Employment

  • An agency is not required to make an accommodation if it can demonstrate that providing the accommodation would impose an undue hardship on its everyday operations. An undue hardship is an action that requires "significant difficulty or expense" in relation to:

    • overall size of the agency's program with respect to the number of employees, number and type of facilities and size of budget;
    • type of operation, including the composition and structure of the agency's workforce; and
    • nature and cost of the accommodation.
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  • Federal agencies are responsible for posting job vacancy announcements on the USAJOBS Website. Vacancy announcements for agency positions are posted for a specific period of time and indicate a closing date. Application procedures and application time periods differ based on agency practices; it is important to review application information included in the announcement for each position in which you are interested
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  • No, individuals with disabilities are eligible to be noncompetitively converted in any Federal agency. Agency selective placement coordinators are urged to try and place disabled people with other agencies, if placement in their own agency is not possible. Checking the job listings on the OPM USAJOBS (www.usajobs.gov) is one way to locate appropriate positions for these individuals.
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  • Generally the agency (employer) must bear the costs of accommodations. Some agencies are organized to provide central funding of the costs of accommodations. Central funding assures that funding is available for accommodations. Check with your personnel office, disability coordinator, or EEO office or your agency’s reasonable accommodation policy to see how funding for accommodations is handled in your agency.

    Also, the Computer/Electronic Accommodations Program (CAP) at the Department of Defense may pay the cost of any technology-related accommodations for covered agencies. Contact the CAP for more information.

    If a client of the State vocational rehabilitation program is being hired, the State agency may pay for those accommodations that the individual would be able to use at any job site (e.g., a Braille notetaking device, an assistive listening device for use with the telephone). The State agency generally does not pay for accommodations to a work station or worksite that must then remain at that location after the individual leaves.

    If a client of the Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Service of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is being hired, the VA may pay the cost of accommodations.

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  • Vacancy announcements will include the qualification requirements, such as education and/or experience, license requirements, etc. You should review the vacancy announcement to determine whether you meet the requirements for the position.
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  • You should discuss this matter with your supervisor and attempt to resolve the situation (including any misunderstanding) informally. In addition, be ready, willing, and able to volunteer for assignments as opportunities arise. By taking the initiative to volunteer, you speak volumes about your attitude and approach to the work in the office.

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  • The closing date is the last day you can apply for the job. The vacancy announcement will specify the acceptance period for electronic submissions or, if a hard copy is required, whether or not your application should be either received or postmarked by the closing date.
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  • A qualified individual with a disability has the skills, experience, education, and other requirements of the job the individual holds or desires, and can perform the essential functions of the position with or without reasonable accommodation.
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  • An individual with a disability:

    • has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the person's major life activities;
    • has a record of such an impairment; or
    • is regarded as having such impairment.
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  • If you are required to travel as an essential function of your job, you are entitled to reasonable accommodation to travel if you need such accommodation. You should start by discussing your need for reasonable accommodations frankly with your supervisor. Accommodations may be made in a wide variety of ways. If you are unable to travel standard coach because of space requirements or mobility limitations, General Services Administration travel regulations provide authority to allow airline travel by first-class. For an employee who uses the services of an interpreter, reader or personal assistant, it may be a matter of ensuring that the personal assistant, reader or interpreter will accompany the individual on a trip or be available once the individual reaches the destination. If travel is not an essential function of the job but only an occasional requirement, you might ask your supervisor if some of the work in your office might be redistributed, allowing you to take on other assignments rather than travel. If you need additional information on how you might be accommodated during travel, you might want to talk to your human resources specialist.

    For more helpful information for travelers with disabilities, see the Disability.gov website.

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