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Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

What is the Americans with Disabilities Act(ADA)?

The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute which provides civil rights protection to individuals with disabilities in the areas of employment, public accommodations, State and local government services, and telecommunications. The ADA was designed to remove barriers which prevent qualified individuals with disabilities from enjoying the same opportunities that are available to persons without disabilities. Similar protections are provided by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and by the Michigan Persons with Disabilities Civil Rights Act.

The ADA provides that no qualified individual with a disability shall, on the basis of disability, be excluded from participation in or be denied the benefits of the services, programs, or activities of the University of Michigan.

Under applicable disability laws, an individual with a disability is a person who (1) has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; (2) has a record of such an impairment; or (3) is regarded as having such an impairment. Temporary, non-chronic impairments that do not last for a long time and that have little or no long-term impact usually are not disabilities. The determination of whether an impairment is a disability is made on a case-by-case basis.

For University employees

What is a reasonable accommodation?

A reasonable accommodation is a modification or adjustment to a job, employment practice, or the work environment that makes it possible for a qualified individual with a disability to enjoy an equal employment opportunity. The university will provide a reasonable accommodation to the known disability of a qualified applicant or employee with a disability unless the accommodation would impose an undue hardship.

Examples of reasonable accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

  • job restructuring

  • modified work schedules

  • obtaining or modifying equipment or devices

  • modifying examinations, training materials or policies

  • providing qualified readers and interpreters

  • reassignment to a vacant position

  • making facilities readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities

What if an employee needs an accommodation?

The employee should contact their supervisor if the need for an accommodation arises.  Some accommodations are easily handled within the department.  Depending on the situation, medical documentation and/or assistance through Work Connections may be included.

What if an employee has questions about the ADA and about a possible accommodation?

The employee can reach out to their designated LSA Staff HR Representative or find out more information from the following resources:

ADA Coordinator, Office for Institutional Equity

2072 Administrative Services
1009 Greene Street
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1432
Voice: (734) 763-0235
TTY: (734) 647-1388
Fax: (734) 936-8894

Faculty and Staff Assistance (FASAP)

FASAP is a confidential counseling service for university faculty and staff.

1009 Greene St.
2076 Administrative Services Building
(734) 936-8660
Confidential Fax: (734) 936-8893

SPG On EEO Affirmative Action for Individuals with Disabilities:

Work Connections Home Page:

Office of Institutional Equity: