We Protect Workers

What is a reasonable accommodation?

When you have a disability or illness that makes it hard for you to work, something your employer should offer to do is to provide you with reasonable accommodations. For example, if you break your leg and still want to work, your employer may need to provide you with a chair to sit on instead of having you perform tasks while standing.

Any time you have a disability, you should be able to receive reasonable accommodations in your place of work. These include accommodations that:

  • Allow individuals with disabilities to apply for work
  • Allow individuals with disabilities to enjoy equal access to the benefits that other workers have
  • Give individuals the ability to perform their job functions despite their disabilities

Are employers required to provide reasonable accommodations?

Yes. Employers are required to provide reasonable accommodations unless doing so would impose an undue hardship on the employer. Therefore, if you ask for more regular breaks, need a longer lunch, require access to medications or have other requests that can be accommodated, then your employer should do their best to allow for your needs. 

What happens if your employer refuses to provide the accommodations you need?

If your employer refuses to provide you with reasonable accommodations, they could be violating employment laws. It’s important for you to make it clear that you need the accommodations and that they shouldn’t affect your work. If your employer refuses basic accommodations or asks you not to return to work, then you may have a case against them for discrimination and unfair treatment in the workplace. Our website has more information on the steps you can take after being refused the accommodations you need.