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Visual impairment and the workplace: Accommodations are necessary

When you go to work as someone who is considered blind, you may struggle with visual tasks. Some people who are blind can see colors or shapes, while others cannot see anything. Depending on how severe your level of visual impairment is, it may be difficult to complete your job without accommodations.

Thanks to the Equal Employment Opportunity Act and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, those with disabilities are able to seek reasonable accommodations in the workplace. For example, if you work in an office setting, you may ask for a keyboard that has braille, or you may ask for certain materials or objects to be kept in the same location, so it’s easier for you to move around.

It is challenging to work with a visual impairment

There is no doubt that it can be challenging to work with a visual impairment, but your employer is required to give you reasonable accommodations in most situations. Unfortunately, some employers may be unfamiliar with visual impairments and blindness, so they may have subconscious beliefs or stereotypes in mind that don’t help you in the workplace.

If you need an accommodation that you are not receiving, it’s a good idea to sit down with your employer. Talk to them about your level of visual impairment and what kinds of accommodations or changes in the workplace would be helpful to you. Understanding what you need and asking for specific accommodations will help your employer make those reasonable changes that will help you complete your work more easily.

If your employer refuses to accommodate you, is discriminatory or is unreasonable about your requests, you may want to look into your legal options.