Review: Job Accommodation Network

In an effort to assist in the employment retention of persons with disabilities, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) offers a no-cost service, JAN, to provide disability employment information to employers, the public, and people with disabilities.

As a disability employment counselor, one of my favorite resources is the Job Accommodation Network (JAN), http://askjan.org. JAN offers a wealth of information on disability employment-related topics for job seekers, employees, and employers, including disability disclosure, facts, and accommodation ideas. This web-resource review highlights some of JAN’s services.

JAN’s Mission:

In an effort to assist in the employment retention of persons with disabilities, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) offers a no-cost service, JAN, to provide disability employment information to employers, the public, and people with disabilities.

SOAR: http://askjan.org/soar/index.htm

One excellent tool is the Accommodation Search, or SOAR (Searchable Online Accommodation Resource). This tool is useful for both employees and employers. Users can view different disability types to find low or no cost accommodation ideas. Here, they can also learn about general disability information; and unique to other disability sites, resources are listed by skill set. For instance, under the “cognitive disability” heading, are accommodation ideas for deficits in math, writing, reading, memory, and time management.

For Employers: http://askjan.org/empl/index.htm

Employers are often looking for advice on how to approach people with disabilities in assisting them on the job. This subheading includes resources for federal and private employers including consulting services, searchable online tools, publications, and trainings.

For Individuals: http://askjan.org/indiv/index.htm

For people with acquired or new disabilities, one of the hardest things to do is to figure out what you need to be successful on the job. Even for those who have had a life-long disability, JAN comes to the rescue!

  • Here, you can find accommodation ideas listed by deficit or by disability type
  • There are also resources and articles on how to ask for an accommodation, the definition of ‘reasonable’ accommodation, and ADA compliance
  • If you are looking for a job, JAN provides resources on disability friendly employers, finding the right job, and entrepreneurship

ADA Library: http://askjan.org/links/adalinks.htm

The ADA library offers resources on changes made to the law, information on each of the different titles of the ADA, and answers to commonly asked questions.

A-Z Disabilities: http://askjan.org/links/atoz.htm

Two sections are included under this heading, Accommodations by disability type, and by disability topic.

Accommodation by Disability Type includes specific information, resources, and accommodation ideas for various types of disabilities, including:

  • Body odor
  • Cancer
  • Cognitive/ neurological
  • Vision impairments
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Learning disabilities
  • Mental health disabilities
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Latex allergies
  • Spina Bifida

Accommodation Information by Topic may be especially helpful for employers and organizations and includes accommodation-related information, such as:

  • Transition-age & Youth
  • Assistive Technology
  • Disclosure
  • Harassment
  • Costs/ benefits/ return to work
  • Disability Etiquette

Publications: http://askjan.org/media/index.htm

Publications and Resources include documents in Word, PDF, or HTML on disability accommodations and information regarding:

  • Industry/ Job type (such as food service, nursing, retail, science jobs, etc.)
  • Products (different accommodations for specific disabilities, i.e. computer software)
  • Fact sheets
  • Consultants Corner
  • Case studies
  • ADA laws
  • Entrepreneurship topics

Federal, State, Local resources: http://askjan.org/pubsandres/res.htm

Under this heading is an expansive list of many different resources including:

  • The Access Board
  • Local information, 2-1-1
  • Centers for Independent Living (CIL)/ Independent Living Centers (ILC)
  • Client Assistant Programs
  • Office of Fair Housing/ Equal opportunities, and more

Webcasts and Trainings: http://askjan.org/training/index.htm

JAN offers free web trainings annually, which can be accessed by signing up on their website. Past trainings can be accessed through the archived series. Each seminar includes a Power Point presentation with written and audio captions, handouts, and resources. I highly recommend the webcast series, as they are informative and useful from the perspective of both an employment specialist and a person with a disability.

I encourage you to explore this invaluable resource as I think it will be a great benefit to you in school, employment and in daily living.

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