Reasonable Accommodations: What You Should Know

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The U.S. Agency for International Development is committed to recruiting and retaining qualified individuals with disabilities.

The Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, is a federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in programs conducted by Federal agencies, in programs receiving Federal financial assistance, in Federal employment, and in the employment practices of Federal contractors.

An employee or qualified applicant may request a reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application process or to perform the essential duties of the position for which they were hired. These accommodation requests are reviewed by the USAID Office of Civil Rights and Diversity Reasonable Accommodation (OCRD/RA) Program. The RA program uses an interactive process between OCRD/RA, the requesting individual (applicant or employee), and the Agency Disability Employment Program Manager, and Human Resources Specialist or supervisor, as appropriate. Accommodations span a wide range of potential services, technologies, and/or workplace modifications. For example, a job applicant might request an American Sign Language interpreter for a job interview, or a visually impaired employee might request alternate format material for effective communication.

The USAID RA policy, Automated Directives System (ADS) Chapter 111 Procedures for Providing Reasonable Accommodation for Individuals with Disabilities, covers the process for requesting a reasonable accommodation and Personal Assistance Services (PAS), including medical documentation requirements, confidentiality, timelines, granting or denial of a request, etc.

You can learn more about PAS at this U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) page: Questions and Answers : Federal Agencies’ Obligation to Provide Personal Assistance Services Under Section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act. Consistent with the EEOC’s guidance, requests for PAS for employees with targeted disabilities will be processed under reasonable accommodations procedures.

For more information or inquiries about the RA Program, including to request an accommodation or PAS, please contact OCRD/RA at

Last updated: May 26, 2021

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