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Accessibility Issues - Reasonable Accommodation

Federal Sector ADR programs must provide reasonable accommodations for their participants, including the parties, their representatives, and the neutrals. Agencies must ensure that whatever ADR process they decide to utilize is accessible to individuals with disabilities. See 29 C.F.R. §1630, et seq.; Section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act, Pub. L. No. 102-569 §503(b), 106 Stat. 4344 (1992) (codified as amended at 29 U.S.C. §791(g) (1994)); The Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), Pub. L. 101-336, 42 U.S.C. §12101-12213 (1994)(codified as amended). A disability accommodation request procedure should be developed and utilized by the agency. In addition, disability awareness training should be provided to ADR staff who will be involved in mediations in any capacity.

In terms of providing accommodations to ADR participants, agencies should consult with their internal Disability Managers. Agencies may also consider a partnership with the Department of Defense's Computer / Electronic Accommodations Program (CAP) which offers assistive technology, devices, and services at no cost to the partner agency. All federal agencies are eligible to partner with CAP, pursuant to the National Defense Authorization Bill, dated October 30, 2000. CAP can be contacted by telephone at (703) 681-8813 or by the internet at http://www.tricare.osd.mil/cap.

ADR Guidelines for ADA/Rehab Act Disputes

The following articles provide guidelines for cases involving the ADA/Rehabilitation Act: