U.S. Department of Labor Frances Perkins Building
This is a segment of our COVID-19 response series. Learn more about the series or browse additional content at COVID-19 and the Workforce.

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) posted an updated and expanded technical assistance publication addressing questions arising under the Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Laws related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The publication, “What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws” expands on a previous publication that focused on the ADA and Rehabilitation Act, and adds questions-and-answers to respond to common inquiries.

          1. Reasonable Accommodations
              • D.13. Is an employee entitled to an accommodation under the ADA in order to avoid exposing a family member who is at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 due to an underlying medical condition? (6/11/20)
                No. Although the ADA prohibits discrimination based on association with an individual with a disability, that protection is limited to disparate treatment or harassment. The ADA does not require that an employer accommodate an employee without a disability based on the disability-related needs of a family member or other person with whom she is associated.
                For example, an employee without a disability is not entitled under the ADA to telework as an accommodation in order to protect a family member with a disability from potential COVID-19 exposure.
                Of course, an employer is free to provide such flexibilities if it chooses to do so. An employer choosing to offer additional flexibilities beyond what the law requires should be careful not to engage in disparate treatment on a protected EEO basis.
          1. Pandemic-Related Harassment Due to National Origin, Race, or Other Protected Characteristics
              • E.3. How may employers respond to pandemic-related harassment, in particular against employees who are or are perceived to be Asian?(6/11/20)
                Managers should be alert to demeaning, derogatory, or hostile remarks directed to employees who are or are perceived to be of Chinese or other Asian national origin, including about the coronavirus or its origins.
                All employers covered by Title VII should ensure that management understands in advance how to recognize such harassment. Harassment may occur using electronic communication tools – regardless of whether employees are in the workplace, teleworking, or on leave – and also in person between employees at the worksite. Harassment of employees at the worksite may also originate with contractors, customers or clients, or, for example, with patients or their family members at health care facilities, assisted living facilities, and nursing homes. Managers should know their legal obligations and be instructed to quickly identify and resolve potential problems, before they rise to the level of unlawful discrimination.
                Employers may choose to send a reminder to the entire workforce noting Title VII’s prohibitions on harassment, reminding employees that harassment will not be tolerated, and inviting anyone who experiences or witnesses workplace harassment to report it to management. Employers may remind employees that harassment can result in disciplinary action up to and including termination.
              • E.4. An employer learns that an employee who is teleworking due to the pandemic is sending harassing emails to another worker.  What actions should the employer take?(6/11/20)
                The employer should take the same actions it would take if the employee was in the workplace. Employees may not harass other employees through, for example, emails, calls, or platforms for video or chat communication and collaboration.
          1. Return to Work
              • G.6. As a best practice, and in advance of having some or all employees return to the workplace, are there ways for an employer to invite employees to request flexibility in work arrangements?(6/11/20)
                Yes. The ADA and the Rehabilitation Act permit employers to make information available in advance to all employees about who to contact – if they wish – to request accommodation for a disability that they may need upon return to the workplace, even if no date has been announced for their return. If requests are received in advance, the employer may begin the interactive process. An employer may choose to include in such a notice all the CDC-listed medical conditions that may place people at higher risk of serious illness if they contract COVID-19, provide instructions about who to contact, and explain that the employer is willing to consider on a case-by-case basis any requests from employees who have these or other medical conditions.
                An employer also may send a general notice to all employees who are designated for returning to the workplace, noting that the employer is willing to consider requests for accommodation or flexibilities on an individualized basis. The employer should specify if the contacts differ depending on the reason for the request – for example, if the office or person to contact is different for employees with disabilities or pregnant workers than for employees whose request is based on age or child-care responsibilities.
                Either approach is consistent with the ADEA, the ADA, and the May 29, 2020 CDC guidance that emphasizes the importance of employers providing accommodations or flexibilities to employees who, due to age or certain medical conditions, are at higher risk for severe illness.
                Regardless of the approach, however, employers should ensure that whoever receives inquiries knows how to handle them consistent with the different federal employment nondiscrimination laws that may apply, for instance, with respect to accommodations due to a medical condition, a religious belief, or pregnancy.
              • G.7. What should an employer do if an employee entering the worksite requests an alternative method of screening due to a medical condition? (6/11/20)
                This is a request for reasonable accommodation, and an employer should proceed as it would for any other request for accommodation under the ADA or the Rehabilitation Act. If the requested change is easy to provide and inexpensive, the employer might voluntarily choose to make it available to anyone who asks, without going through an interactive process. Alternatively, if the disability is not obvious or already known, an employer may ask the employee for information to establish that the condition is a disability and what specific limitations require an accommodation. If necessary, an employer also may request medical documentation to support the employee’s request, and then determine if that accommodation or an alternative effective accommodation can be provided, absent undue hardship.
                Similarly, if an employee requested an alternative method of screening as a religious accommodation, the employer should determine if accommodation is available under Title VII.
          1. Age
              • H.1. The CDC has explained that individuals age 65 and over are at higher risk for a severe case of COVID-19 if they contract the virus and therefore has encouraged employers to offer maximum flexibilities to this group.  Do employees age 65 and over have protections under the federal employment discrimination laws?(6/11/20)
                The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) prohibits employment discrimination against individuals age 40 and older. The ADEA would prohibit a covered employer from involuntarily excluding an individual from the workplace based on his or her being 65 or older, even if the employer acted for benevolent reasons such as protecting the employee due to higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19.
                Unlike the ADA, the ADEA does not include a right to reasonable accommodation for older workers due to age. However, employers are free to provide flexibility to workers age 65 and older; the ADEA does not prohibit this, even if it results in younger workers ages 40-64 being treated less favorably based on age in comparison.
                Workers age 65 and older also may have medical conditions that bring them under the protection of the ADA as individuals with disabilities. As such, they may request reasonable accommodation for their disability as opposed to their age.
          1. Caregivers/Family Responsibilities
              • I.1. If an employer provides telework, modified schedules, or other benefits to employees with school-age children due to school closures or distance learning during the pandemic, are there sex discrimination considerations?(6/11/20)
                Employers may provide any flexibilities as long as they are not treating employees differently based on sex or other EEO-protected characteristics. For example, under Title VII, female employees cannot be given more favorable treatment than male employees because of a gender-based assumption about who may have caretaking responsibilities for children.
          1. Pregnancy
              • J.1. Due to the pandemic, may an employer exclude an employee from the workplace involuntarily due to pregnancy? (6/11/20)
                No. Sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act includes discrimination based on pregnancy. Even if motivated by benevolent concern, an employer is not permitted to single out workers on the basis of pregnancy for adverse employment actions, including involuntary leave, layoff, or furlough.
              • J.2. Is there a right to accommodation based on pregnancy during the pandemic? (6/11/20)
                There are two federal employment discrimination laws that may trigger accommodation for employees based on pregnancy.
                First, pregnancy-related medical conditions may themselves be disabilities under the ADA, even though pregnancy itself is not an ADA disability. If an employee makes a request for reasonable accommodation due to a pregnancy-related medical condition, the employer must consider it under the usual ADA rules.
                Second, Title VII as amended by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act specifically requires that women affected by pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions be treated the same as others who are similar in their ability or inability to work. This means that a pregnant employee may be entitled to job modifications, including telework, changes to work schedules or assignments, and leave to the extent provided for other employees who are similar in their ability or inability to work. Employers should ensure that supervisors, managers, and human resources personnel know how to handle such requests to avoid disparate treatment in violation of Title VII.
  • G.3. What does an employee need to do in order to request reasonable accommodation from her employer because she has one of the medical conditions that CDC says may put her at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19? (5/5/20)
    An employee – or a third party, such as an employee’s doctor – must let the employer know that she needs a change for a reason related to a medical condition (here, the underlying condition).  Individuals may request accommodation in conversation or in writing.  While the employee (or third party) does not need to use the term “reasonable accommodation” or reference the ADA, she may do so.
    The employee or her representative should communicate that she has a medical condition that necessitates a change to meet a medical need.  After receiving a request, the employer may ask questions or seek medical documentation to help decide if the individual has a disability and if there is a reasonable accommodation, barring undue hardship, that can be provided.
  • G.4. The CDC identifies a number of medical conditions that might place individuals at “higher risk for severe illness” if they get COVID-19.  An employer knows that an employee has one of these conditions and is concerned that his health will be jeopardized upon returning to the workplace, but the employee has not requested accommodation.  How does the ADA apply to this situation? (5/7/20)
    First, if the employee does not request a reasonable accommodation, the ADA does not mandate that the employer take action.
    If the employer is concerned about the employee’s health being jeopardized upon returning to the workplace, the ADA does not allow the employer to exclude the employee – or take any other adverse action – solely because the employee has a disability that the CDC identifies as potentially placing him at “higher risk for severe illness” if he gets COVID-19.  Under the ADA, such action is not allowed unless the employee’s disability poses a “direct threat” to his health that cannot be eliminated or reduced by reasonable accommodation.
    The ADA direct threat requirement is a high standard.  As an affirmative defense, direct threat requires an employer to show that the individual has a disability that poses a “significant risk of substantial harm” to his own health under 29 C.F.R. section 1630.2(r). A direct threat assessment cannot be based solely on the condition being on the CDC’s list; the determination must be an individualized assessment based on a reasonable medical judgment about this employee’s disability – not the disability in general – using the most current medical knowledge and/or on the best available objective evidence. The ADA regulation requires an employer to consider the duration of the risk, the nature and severity of the potential harm, the likelihood that the potential harm will occur, and the imminence of the potential harm.  Analysis of these factors will likely include considerations based on the severity of the pandemic in a particular area and the employee’s own health (for example, is the employee’s disability well-controlled), and his particular job duties.  A determination of direct threat also would include the likelihood that an individual will be exposed to the virus at the worksite.  Measures that an employer may be taking in general to protect all workers, such as mandatory social distancing, also would be relevant.
    Even if an employer determines that an employee’s disability poses a direct threat to his own health, the employer still cannot exclude the employee from the workplace – or take any other adverse action – unless there is no way to provide a reasonable accommodation (absent undue hardship).  The ADA regulations require an employer to consider whether there are reasonable accommodations that would eliminate or reduce the risk so that it would be safe for the employee to return to the workplace while still permitting performance of essential functions.  This can involve an interactive process with the employee.  If there are not accommodations that permit this, then an employer must consider accommodations such as telework, leave, or reassignment (perhaps to a different job in a place where it may be safer for the employee to work or that permits telework).  An employer may only bar an employee from the workplace if, after going through all these steps, the facts support the conclusion that the employee poses a significant risk of substantial harm to himself that cannot be reduced or eliminated by reasonable accommodation.
  • G.5. What are examples of accommodation that, absent undue hardship, may eliminate (or reduce to an acceptable level) a direct threat to self? (5/5/20)
    Accommodations may include additional or enhanced protective gowns, masks, gloves, or other gear beyond what the employer may generally provide to employees returning to its workplace.  Accommodations also may include additional or enhanced protective measures, for example, erecting a barrier that provides separation between an employee with a disability and coworkers/the public or increasing the space between an employee with a disability and others.  Another possible reasonable accommodation may be elimination or substitution of particular “marginal” functions (less critical or incidental job duties as distinguished from the “essential” functions of a particular position).  In addition, accommodations may include temporary modification of work schedules (if that decreases contact with coworkers and/or the public when on duty or commuting) or moving the location of where one performs work (for example, moving a person to the end of a production line rather than in the middle of it if that provides more social distancing).
    These are only a few ideas.  Identifying an effective accommodation depends, among other things, on an employee’s job duties and the design of the workspace.  An employer and employee should discuss possible ideas; the Job Accommodation Network (www.askjan.org) also may be able to assist in helping identify possible accommodations.  As with all discussions of reasonable accommodation during this pandemic, employers and employees are encouraged to be creative and flexible.
  • Disability-Related Inquiries and Medical Exams
      • A.6. May an employer administer a COVID-19 test (a test to detect the presence of the COVID-19 virus) before permitting employees to enter the workplace? 4/23/20
        The ADA requires that any mandatory medical test of employees be “job related and consistent with business necessity.” Applying this standard to the current circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic, employers may take steps to determine if employees entering the workplace have COVID-19 because an individual with the virus will pose a direct threat to the health of others. Therefore an employer may choose to administer COVID-19 testing to employees before they enter the workplace to determine if they have the virus.
        Consistent with the ADA standard, employers should ensure that the tests are accurate and reliable. For example, employers may review guidance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration about what may or may not be considered safe and accurate testing, as well as guidance from CDC or other public health authorities, and check for updates. Employers may wish to consider the incidence of false-positives or false-negatives associated with a particular test. Finally, note that accurate testing only reveals if the virus is currently present; a negative test does not mean the employee will not acquire the virus later.
        Based on guidance from medical and public health authorities, employers should still require – to the greatest extent possible – that employees observe infection control practices (such as social distancing, regular handwashing, and other measures) in the workplace to prevent transmission of COVID-19.
          1. Reasonable Accommodations
              • D.5. During the pandemic, if an employee requests an accommodation for a medical condition either at home or in the workplace, may an employer still request information to determine if the condition is a disability?(4/17/20)
                Yes, if it is not obvious or already known, an employer may ask questions or request medical documentation to determine whether the employee has a “disability” as defined by the ADA (a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity, or a history of a substantially limiting impairment).
              • D.6. During the pandemic, may an employer still engage in the interactive process and request information from an employee about why an accommodation is needed? (4/17/20)
                Yes, if it is not obvious or already known, an employer may ask questions or request medical documentation to determine whether the employee’s disability necessitates an accommodation, either the one he requested or any other. Possible questions for the employee may include: (1) how the disability creates a limitation, (2) how the requested accommodation will effectively address the limitation, (3) whether another form of accommodation could effectively address the issue, and (4) how a proposed accommodation will enable the employee to continue performing the “essential functions” of his position (that is, the fundamental job duties).
              • D.7. If there is some urgency to providing an accommodation, or the employer has limited time available to discuss the request during the pandemic, may an employer provide a temporary accommodation? (4/17/20)
                Yes. Given the pandemic, some employers may choose to forgo or shorten the exchange of information between an employer and employee known as the “interactive process” (discussed in D.5 and D.6., above) and grant the request. In addition, when government restrictions change, or are partially or fully lifted, the need for accommodations may also change. This may result in more requests for short-term accommodations. Employers may wish to adapt the interactive process – and devise end dates for the accommodation – to suit changing circumstances based on public health directives.
                Whatever the reason for shortening or adapting the interactive process, an employer may also choose to place an end date on the accommodation (for example, either a specific date such as May 30, or when the employee returns to the workplace part- or full-time due to changes in government restrictions limiting the number of people who may congregate). Employers may also opt to provide a requested accommodation on an interim or trial basis, with an end date, while awaiting receipt of medical documentation. Choosing one of these alternatives may be particularly helpful where the requested accommodation would provide protection that an employee may need because of a pre-existing disability that puts her at greater risk during this pandemic. This could also apply to employees who have disabilities exacerbated by the pandemic.
                Employees may request an extension that an employer must consider, particularly if current government restrictions are extended or new ones adopted.
              • D.8. May an employer ask employees now if they will need reasonable accommodations in the future when they are permitted to return to the workplace? (4/17/20)
                Yes. Employers may ask employees with disabilities to request accommodations that they believe they may need when the workplace re-opens. Employers may begin the “interactive process” – the discussion between the employer and employee focused on whether the impairment is a disability and the reasons that an accommodation is needed.
              • D.9. Are the circumstances of the pandemic relevant to whether a requested accommodation can be denied because it poses an undue hardship? (4/17/20)
                Yes. An employer does not have to provide a particular reasonable accommodation if it poses an “undue hardship,” which means “significant difficulty or expense.” In some instances, an accommodation that would not have posed an undue hardship prior to the pandemic may pose one now.
              • D.10. What types of undue hardship considerations may be relevant to determine if a requested accommodation poses “significant difficulty” during the COVID-19 pandemic? (4/17/20)
                An employer may consider whether current circumstances create “significant difficulty” in acquiring or providing certain accommodations, considering the facts of the particular job and workplace. For example, it may be significantly more difficult in this pandemic to conduct a needs assessment or to acquire certain items, and delivery may be impacted, particularly for employees who may be teleworking. Or, it may be significantly more difficult to provide employees with temporary assignments, to remove marginal functions, or to readily hire temporary workers for specialized positions. If a particular accommodation poses an undue hardship, employers and employees should work together to determine if there may be an alternative that could be provided that does not pose such problems.
              • D.11. What types of undue hardship considerations may be relevant to determine if a requested accommodation poses “significant expense” during the COVID-19 pandemic? (4/17/20)
                Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, most accommodations did not pose a significant expense when considered against an employer’s overall budget and resources (always considering the budget/resources of the entire entity and not just its components). But, the sudden loss of some or all of an employer’s income stream because of this pandemic is a relevant consideration. Also relevant is the amount of discretionary funds available at this time – when considering other expenses – and whether there is an expected date that current restrictions on an employer’s operations will be lifted (or new restrictions will be added or substituted). These considerations do not mean that an employer can reject any accommodation that costs money; an employer must weigh the cost of an accommodation against its current budget while taking into account constraints created by this pandemic. For example, even under current circumstances, there may be many no-cost or very low-cost accommodations.
          1. Pandemic-Related Harassment Due to National Origin, Race, or Other Protected Characteristics
              • E.2. Are there steps an employer should take to address possible harassment and discrimination against coworkers when it re-opens the workplace? (4/17/20)
                Yes. An employer may remind all employees that it is against the federal EEO laws to harass or otherwise discriminate against coworkers based on race, national origin, color, sex, religion, age (40 or over), disability, or genetic information. It may be particularly helpful for employers to advise supervisors and managers of their roles in watching for, stopping, and reporting any harassment or other discrimination. An employer may also make clear that it will immediately review any allegations of harassment or discrimination and take appropriate action.
          1. Return to Work
              • G.1. As government stay-at-home orders and other restrictions are modified or lifted in your area, how will employers know what steps they can take consistent with the ADA to screen employees for COVID-19 when entering the workplace? (4/17/20)
                The ADA permits employers to make disability-related inquiries and conduct medical exams if job-related and consistent with business necessity. Inquiries and reliable medical exams meet this standard if it is necessary to exclude employees with a medical condition that would pose a direct threat to health or safety.
                Direct threat is to be determined based on the best available objective medical evidence. The guidance from CDC or other public health authorities is such evidence. Therefore, employers will be acting consistent with the ADA as long as any screening implemented is consistent with advice from the CDC and public health authorities for that type of workplace at that time.
                For example, this may include continuing to take temperatures and asking questions about symptoms (or require self-reporting) of all those entering the workplace. Similarly, the CDC recently posted information on return by certain types of critical workers.
                Employers should make sure not to engage in unlawful disparate treatment based on protected characteristics in decisions related to screening and exclusion.
              • G.2. An employer requires returning workers to wear personal protective gear and engage in infection control practices. Some employees ask for accommodations due to a need for modified protective gear. Must an employer grant these requests? (4/17/20)
                An employer may require employees to wear protective gear (for example, masks and gloves) and observe infection control practices (for example, regular hand washing and social distancing protocols).
                However, where an employee with a disability needs a related reasonable accommodation under the ADA (e.g., non-latex gloves, modified face masks for interpreters or others who communicate with an employee who uses lip reading, or gowns designed for individuals who use wheelchairs), or a religious accommodation under Title VII (such as modified equipment due to religious garb), the employer should discuss the request and provide the modification or an alternative if feasible and not an undue hardship on the operation of the employer’s business under the ADA or Title VII.

In response to inquiries from the public, the EEOC has provided resources on its website related to the pandemic in an employment context. The agency will continue to monitor developments and provide assistance to the public as needed.

The EEOC provided a detailed bulletin entitled Q&A About the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and COVID-19 on March 18, 2020. The bulletin includes access to EEOC’s publication entitled Pandemic Preparedness in the Workplace and the Americans With Disabilities Act along with links to guidelines and suggestions made by the CDC for state/local public health authorities about steps employers should take regarding COVID-19. Employers should remember that guidance from public health authorities is likely to change as the COVID-19 pandemic evolves. Therefore, employers should continue to follow the most current information on maintaining workplace safety. The EEOC also provides Work from Home Guidance that may assist organizations in understanding how to approach work from home for employees with disabilities.

In “Pandemic Preparedness in the Workplace and the ADA,” the EEOC discusses strategies to remain ADA compliant while preparing for, during and after a pandemic. An employer’s ADA responsibilities to individuals with disabilities continue during a pandemic. Only when an employer can demonstrate that a person with a disability poses a direct threat, even after reasonable accommodation, can it lawfully exclude them from employment or employment-related activities.

The EEOC suggests providing the same accommodations for an employee who is teleworking that would be provided for them if they were working in the office, absent undue hardship. For example, if an employee with a disability needs a sit/stand workstation at the workplace and requests it at the telework site, the employer should provide that accommodation, absent undue hardship. In the event of undue hardship, the employer and employee should cooperate to identify an alternative reasonable accommodation.

The EEOC posted a pre-recorded webinar addressing questions arising under any of the Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Laws and the COVID-19 pandemic. Watch the video on YouTube, view it on their Coronavirus web page, or read a transcript of the webinar.

U.S. Department of Labor

The Department of Labor has created a Coronavirus web page with resources to help employers and employees to prepare for the COVID-19 virus. The page includes links to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s COVID Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19, the Wage and Hour Division’s COVID and the American Workplace page and more. Since one critical strategy for Coronavirus is social distancing, many employers will opt for telework or work from home strategies to keep their workers and communities healthy.

Following are some supporting resources.

Office of Disability Employment Policy

The U.S. Department of Labor released a series of “COVID-19 Quick Employment Tips” videos. The first is on supporting workers’ mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic and features the Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion’s Mental Health Toolkit. The second highlights resources and information on reasonable accommodations and COVID-19 from the Job Accommodation Network. The third is focused on employer understanding of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) during COVID-19.

Job Accommodation Network

The Job Accommodation Network (JAN) COVID-19 page provides a variety of Coronavirus resources for employers, including:

Seeking a sharable document with most of this content from JAN?  Access the JAN Accommodation and Compliance Series: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

JAN also provides Telework Guidance and has a comprehensive Searchable Online Accommodation Resource to discover what employees with disabilities might need to successfully work from home.

Families First Coronavirus Response Act National Online Dialogue

Hosted by the Office of Compliance Initiatives in partnership with Wage and Hour Division and the Office of Disability Employment Policy, this national online dialogue provides an innovative opportunity for employers and employees to play a key role in shaping the development of DOL’s compliance assistance materials and outreach strategies related to the implementation of the FFCRA.

Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion

The Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion (EARN) is a technical assistance provider of the Office of Disability Employment Policy. EARN hosted a webinar on April 1, 2020 featuring a discussion about balancing guidance on COVID-19 containment from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission guidance on the Americans with Disabilities Act. The presenters examined implications of the COVID-19 pandemic on disability-related inquiries, medical examinations, interpreting direct threat and the rise in reasonable accommodation requests for telework. Access the webinar and full transcript.

Employment and Training Administration – WorkforceGPS

WorkforceGPS is an online technical assistance website created to help build the capacity of America’s public workforce investment system. Sponsored by the Employment and Training Administration of the U.S. Department of Labor, WorkforceGPS was developed specifically for workforce professionals, educators, and business leaders, and published Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Other Disability Focused Federal Resources to support the disability and employment community during the COVID-10 crisis.

Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) issued a National Interest Exemption memorandum to facilitate response efforts for COVID-19. In view of the special circumstances in the national interest presented by the novel coronavirus outbreak, OFCCP will grant a limited, three-month exemption and waiver from some of the requirements of the laws administered by the agency.

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) remains fully operational during the COVID-19 pandemic. OFCCP’s Functional Affirmative Action Program (FAAP) team is working remotely and is continuing to process FAAP requests and certifications. If contractors are experiencing challenges related to COVID-19, OFCCP will remain flexible and provide reasonable extensions where needed. FAAP contractors should reach out to OFCCP’s FAAP unit with questions regarding their agreements at [email protected]. If you need assistance with OFCCP matters related to the health crisis, please contact the Help Desk at 1-800-397-6251. The hearing impaired may call the text telephone (TTY) at 1-877-889-5627 or submit an inquiry online.

Partnership on Employment and Accessible Technology (PEAT)

The Partnership on Employment & Accessible Technology (PEAT) is funded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP). PEAT’s mission is to foster collaborations that make emerging technologies accessible, support workplaces in using inclusive technologies that engage the skills of employees with disabilities, and to build a future that works. PEAT offers a Telework & Accessibility resource page with information on creating accessible content, hosting meetings and presentations, staff training and devices, and supports for both employees with disabilities and recruiting and hiring professionals. Don’t miss the blog post entitled 7 Steps to Make Your Virtual Presentations Accessible.

Josh Christianson, Co-Director of PEAT discusses how employers can make the virtual workplace accessible on Episode 26 of the Future of Work Podcast entitled Making the Virtual Workplace Accessible.

Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)

FFCRA programs provides funds to small businesses with not more than 500 employees to provide employees with paid leave, either for the employee’s own health needs or to care for family members.

The paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave provisions of the FFCRA apply to certain public employers, and private employers with fewer than 500 employees.

Featured fact sheets:

U.S. Small Business Administration

The U.S. Small Business Administration launched the Coronavirus Relief Options website in support of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and. Economic Security (CARES) Act. This site includes small business loan programs and debt relief and the Paycheck Protection Program for small businesses with not more than 500 employees. These programs may assist Disability Owned Business Enterprises (DOBEs) and other small business suppliers and vendors.

U.S. Office of Personnel Management’s Telework.gov

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) maintains the Telework.gov website to provide easy access to information about telework in the Federal Government. While the information contained on the website pertains to Executive Branch agencies and employees, the resources are available for others to access, including the Self-AssessmentSafety Checklist and Training pages.

U.S. Treasury & The CARES Act

The CARES Act programs include some of the following sources of support:

  • American Workers and Families Economic Impact Payments: Distribution of economic impact payments will begin in the next three weeks and will be distributed automatically, with no action required for most people. However, some seniors and others who typically do not file income tax returns will need to submit a simple tax return to receive the stimulus payment. Check the IRS website for updates.
  • Payroll Support for Businesses: The U.S. Treasury Department will be providing guidance and updates on program implementation at. As of March 31, 2020, the website provides guidance for Payroll Support and Loans to Air Carriers and Eligible Businesses and National Security Businesses only.

About the COVID-19 Response Series

As we work together and learn during this unprecedented time, we are guided by two broad principles:

  1. Designing and implementing responses to COVID-19 that are based on facts, objective evidence, and science; and
  2. Ensuring that our responses are genuine, effective, and meaningful by taking into consideration the functional needs of all employees, including individuals with disabilities through the provision of reasonable accommodations, including accessible websites, online systems, mobile apps and other forms of information and communication technologies.

Disability:IN has compiled the following resources to support your disability inclusion work during COVID-19. Please know that more resources will be added as they become available. If you have a resource that isn’t listed but should be, please email Kate Calcutt.

Full COVID-19 Response Series