Sonoma State University seeks to assist applicants and employees with disabilities by providing reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals in order to support performing the essential functions of the position safely and fully. Applicants and employees are to work with their Health Care Provider to clarify the accommodation request so that additional conversation can continue as part of a Good Faith Interactive Process. Please note: a Health Care Provider may include (1) a medical or osteopathic doctor, physician, or surgeon, licensed in CA or in another state or country, who directly treats or supervises the treatment of the applicant or employee; (2) a marriage and family therapist or acupuncturist, licensed in CA or in another state or country, or any other persons who meet the definition of "others capable of providing health care services" under FMLA and its implementing regulations, including podiatrists, dentists, nurse midwives, clinical social workers, physician assistants; (3) a chiropractor, but only as a health care provider limited to treatment consisting of manual manipulation of the spine to correct a subluxation as demonstrated by X-ray to exist.
Involvement of ADA Specialist
Many conditions and accommodations are obvious and unquestioned. In situations where an accommodation is requested and there are questions regarding either the existence of a qualified disability, the need for an accommodation, or the nature of the accommodation to be provided, appropriate administrators need to consult with the ADA Specialist. If a manager or supervisor questions the condition, restriction or proposed accommodation, s/he must discuss the reservations with the ADA Specialist before engaging in the interactive process with the employee. This will avoid managers and supervisors misunderstanding their obligations under University policy.
Under FEHA/ADA, Sonoma State University is essentially required by law to do the following: Provide a reasonable accommodation for applicants and employees who, because of their disability are limited in or unable to perform one or more of the essential functions of their job AND engage in a timely Good Faith Interactive Process with applicants/employees in need of reasonable accommodation.
The ADA Specialist assists in evaluating needed information, employees' work restrictions and limitations to perform jobs, entitlement to accommodation, appropriateness of accommodations, and related issues.
To assist in processing requests for accommodation, the ADA Specialist's office utilizes the Accommodation Request Form. In order to clarify the request for a reasonable accommodation, the ADA Specialist will provide a Supplemental Medical Questionnaire tailored towards the requested accommodation and Position Description for the treating health care provider to review and complete. Additional clarification from the health care provider may be requested in order to fully understand the applicant/employee's limitations and explore a reasonable accommodation to order to perform the essential functions of the job safely and fully.
The Good Faith Interactive Process is required whenever an accommodation is requested. Throughout the interactive process, essential functions of the position and the Supplemental Medical Questionnaire will be reviewed. Dialogue will be promoted amongst the employee and their appropriate administrator in order to explore any and all reasonable accommodations to support applicants and employees in accordance with the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA).
Confidential, Personal, and Medical Information
Commonly, medical and other professionals need to provide verification of conditions and limitations. Such information is confidential and must be handled carefully. It is common for doctors to both acknowledge a condition and provide a description of limitations or accommodations that are required or suggested.
Height Adjustable Workstation as an ADA Accommodation
The need for a height adjustable workstation as an ADA Accommodation will be assessed on a case-by-case basis as part of a Good Faith Interactive Process. Health care providers must complete the Height Adjustable Workstation Supplemental Medical Questionnaire. If a height adjustable workstation is approved as a reasonable accommodation, the ADA Specialist will navigate with the employee and department to determine which ergonomically approved height adjustable product best fits the need of the employee and is within reasonable budget for the department.
Sonoma State University ADA Coordination
The following individuals provide ADA coordination in their specific areas, and may be contacted with regard to ADA issues, questions or concerns in that area.