Company Type: Entertainment/Hospitality
Location: New York City, NY
Client Since: 2017
When the client’s hiring manager contacted a job candidate to schedule an interview, the candidate requested an American Sign Language (ASL) Interpreter for the interview. Essential functions of the position for which the candidate had applied included regular interaction with the public, as well as the ability to communicate with team members throughout the shift. The manager expressed concern that it would be impossible for this candidate to do the job, and asked Staff One HR for guidance on how to respond to the candidate.
Staff One HR’s Approach
As with any disability, not all people who are deaf or hearing-impaired have the same level of impairment. The applicant might be able to communicate with the public and other team members, or respond to audible safety warnings with little or no accommodation, or with a readily available one. Staff One HR advised the client to comply with the request for accommodation and to conduct the interview as they would with any other candidate, determining objectively whether the candidate is the best applicant as compared to his/her competition. This also would provide sufficient documentation that the hiring decision was based on the relative qualifications of the individual, and not the disability.
Because the client has more than 15 employees, they must comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA), which prohibit private employers with 15 or more employees from discriminating against qualified individuals with disabilities in job application procedures, hiring, firing, advancement, compensation, job training, and other terms, conditions, and privileges of employment.
The client contacted the candidate to confirm the interview time and ask if the candidate preferred a specific ASL Interpreter service. Staff One HR continued to work closely with the client throughout the hiring process.
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