Accommodation of Disabilities in the Workplace Policy

Category:  Human Resources

Approval:  Vice-Principals' Operations Committee

Responsibility:  Associate Vice-Principal of Human Resources

Date:  January 12, 2015; Policy review process began in 2021

Purpose/Reason for Policy:

This Policy and its related procedures and guidelines set standards for ensuring compliance with the University's Duty to Accommodate Disability.

Scope of this Policy:

This Policy applies to all University employees, and any applicants for employment who require an Accommodation Measure due to Disability.

Policy Statement:

The University is committed to meetings its obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act by providing a workplace that ensures full inclusion and participation of staff, faculty and job applicants with disabilities.


Employee/Applicant Requiring an Accommodation Measure

  • notify the appropriate officer of the University regarding the need for an Accommodation Measure
  • identify any known accommodation needs and cooperate with reasonable requests for evidence establishing accommodation needs
  • cooperate with the University in the accommodation process 

Officers of the University

  • Accept requests for accommodation in good faith
  • Deal with accommodation requests as quickly as possible
  • Identify the Bona Fide Occupational Requirements of the position
  • Manage the accommodation process by encouraging co-operation, dialogue, consideration of all options, monitoring and evaluation of employment accommodation solutions
  • Keep a written record of the accommodation request and action taken
  • Maintain confidentiality, and ensure that the institution responds to any requests for information in accordance with applicable privacy legislation (PIPEDA, PHIPA and FIPPA).

The University

  • Ultimately, the Duty to Accommodate Disability is an institutional obligation as the University is the employer. Accordingly, any department/unit is obligated to facilitate an Accommodation Measure and has a duty to cooperate in that regard. The onus is on the employer to establish that it has fulfilled the Duty to Accommodate.

Human Resources Department - Return to Work & Accommodation Department

  • Provide advice, guidelines, and resources related to policy interpretation and procedures for employment accommodation to faculty, staff and supervisors
  • Ensure the policy is interpreted and applied to promote the University's commitment in building an inclusive community
  • Ensure employment and accommodation information is available and processes established to enhance accessibility for faculty, staff and job applicants
  • Assist with disability management including establishing employment Accommodation Measures for employees with Disabilities and facilitating return to work
  • Request Substantiated Medical Documentation as appropriate to support the request
  • Maintain confidentiality as required under this policy and ensure that accommodation requests are managed in a manner that is consistent with privacy legislation PIPEDA, PHIPA and FIPPA.
  • Develop Return to Work and Accommodation Plans as outlined in the Return to Work Procedure and Individualized Disability Accommodation Procedure documents.
  • Determine an employee's entitlement to participate in the Accommodation Program
  • Consult with other departments as required

 Union Representatives

  • Facilitate any Accommodation Measures that require agreements outside of the respective collective agreement
  • Participate in the development of Accommodation Measures for members and work with the employer and other members to address existing barriers
  • Facilitate job placement for individuals participating in the Accommodation Program

  Accommodation of Disabilities Definitions

Contact Officer:Sydney Downey, Manager, RTW & Accommodation
Date for Next Review: January, 2020
Related Policies, Procedures and Guidelines: