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The ADA requires that employers, state and local governments, and businesses and nonprofit organizations that serve the public communicate effectively with people who have communication disabilities. The goal is to ensure that communication with people with these disabilities is equally effective as communication with people without disabilities. The following publications provide information regarding effective communication:
- Effective Communication
- Tips for Communicating by Telephone with Individuals who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing
- Effective Accommodation Practices (EAP) Series: Disability Etiquette Tips for Speaking Engagements
- Effective Accommodation Practices (EAP) Series: Communication Tips for Working with Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities
Situations and Solutions:
The following situations and solutions are real-life examples of accommodations that were made by JAN customers. Because accommodations are made on a case-by-case basis, these examples may not be effective for every workplace but give you an idea about the types of accommodations that are possible.
A municipality recently hired a code inspector who is deaf.
The city decided to provide an interpreter for training and a cell phone with texting to use when working in the field. The inspector was able to inspect buildings and enforce the building codes with these accommodations.
A customer service representative with progressive vision loss needed to access information on his computer screen while talking with customers on the phone.
Her employer provided screen reading software and a dual input headset.
A sales person with dyslexia was having difficulty reading new product literature.
Her employer provided a reader.
A receptionist who was recovering from vocal surgery had difficulty speaking loudly enough for customers to hear her when she greeted them.
She also experienced vocal fatigue when speaking on the phone. Her employer purchased a voice amplifier for face to face use and one designed for telephone use as well, so that she did not have to strain her voice to speak more loudly.
An accountant who was hard of hearing had to periodically attend staff meetings, but could not hear when multiple people spoke.
His employer provided an assistive listening device.