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Accommodating Disabilities

Accommodating Mental and Physical Disabilities in the Workplace

How to accommodate employees with complex mental and physical disabilities is a critical issue in the modern workplace. Both unions and employers must be equipped to navigate the issues arising out of the duty to accommodate. In this in-depth training session, experts will take participants through a step-by-step tutorial designed to enable workplace parties to respond to requests for accommodation in a timely, consistent and effective manner.



E-mail Roshien Asanta or call (416) 977-6618 for more information. We can help to tailor a Customized Training package for you.

Sample Schedule

7:45 a.m. - 8:45 a.m.


8:45 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.

 PART 1:  Legal Responsibilities in the Accommodation Process – A Roadmap

Lancaster's legal experts, including employer and union-side lawyers, human resource professionals and union representatives, will discuss the steps to be taken in fulfilling the duty to accommodate, including:

  • Assessing requests for accommodation
    • Requesting medical information to support accommodation
    • Balancing employees' privacy rights
    • Duty to provide medical information
  • Obligation to offer modified duties
    • Roadmap for accommodation
    • Matching restrictions to job duties
    • Permanent vs. temporary restrictions
    • Accommodation vs. seniority rights
    • Investigating accommodation options
    • Bundling job duties
    • Duty to accept reasonable offers of accommodated work
    • Return to work meetings
  • Undue hardship
    • Identifying the essential duties of a job
    • When does an employer reach undue hardship

The speakers will also discuss how the parties can create effective policies and procedures to guide the accommodation process and ensure that all employees are treated in a fair and consistent manner with minimal disruption to the workplace at large.

11:15 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.


11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

 PART 2:  Medical Insights in the Accommodation Process

A medical practitioner experienced with accommodation cases will discuss disabilities requiring accommodation in the workplace. The speaker will also discuss:

  • The types of medical information and medical assessments necessary to accommodate employees
  • How to best engage health care professionals in the accommodation process
  • Standard duration of common physical and mental conditions
  • Accommodating alcohol and substance dependence
  • How to promote compliance with proper treatment plans

1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.


2:00 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.

 PART 3:  Case Studies – Putting the Accommodation Process into Practice

Participants will work through role-playing scenarios based on real-life accommodation problems which have gone to arbitration. Throughout the process, experienced management and union representatives will be assisting the participants and providing tips on best practices.

Participants will leave the course with the skills needed to identify accommodation issues in the workplace and co-operatively implement solutions which are fair and effective.

3:15 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.


3:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

 PART 3 CONTINUED:  Case Studies – Putting the Accommodation Process into Practice

Additional Information

Includes materials, with case summaries and analyses, prepared by Lancaster's legal staff.