The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law on July 26, 1990. The ADA prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in employment, transportation, public accommodation, communications, and activities of state and local government. The university is committed to achieving equal educational and employment opportunity and full participation for persons with disabilities. The university is committed to nondiscrimination for all persons in employment, academic programs, and access to facilities, programs, activities, and services. 

Anyone who has a physical or mental impairment substantially limiting one or more major life activities, has a record of such impairment, or is regarded as having such impairment, is considered a person with a disability. In accordance with the provisions of the ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, disabilities may include, but are not necessarily limited to, visual impairments, mobility and orthopedic impairments, hearing impairments, chronic medical conditions, learning disabilities, and psychological disorders.

In terms of employment, the law defines a “qualified individual with a disability” as a person who can perform the essential functions of the job with or without reasonable accommodation. Accommodations are developed on an individual basis and in a partnership between the person with the disability and the employer. Accommodation solutions may involve equipment changes, workstation modifications, adjustments to work schedules, or assistance in accessing the facility, depending on the individual's particular limitations and needs. Accommodations are based on the job tasks that must be performed, the functional limitations of the individual, and whether the proposed accommodation(s) will result in undue hardship to the employer.

Faculty and staff with questions about the Americans with Disabilities Act who would like to request an accommodation may contact a Human Resources Benefits Specialist or email benefits@jmu.edu. All other inquires should contact the Office of Disability Services.

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