For Search Committees

Providing equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities is essential to UB's inclusion efforts.

Search committees play an important role in ensuring that UB is diverse and inclusive. This information will help the search committee create a welcoming environment for interviewees with disabilities. 

Preparing for the Interview

  • Be aware that UB's Reasonable Accommodation Policy prohibits asking disability-related questions before a job offer is made.  You cannot ask about an impairment, whether the candidate has a record of illness, or any other disability-related question.
  • Check that your interviewing locations are accessible to persons with a variety of disabilities.
  • Applicants with disabilities are entitled to reasonable accommodations to participate in the interview.  This process is coordinated through the Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion
  • Inform applicants ahead of time if they will be required to take a test to demonstrate their ability to perform actual or simulated tasks so that they can request a reasonable accommodation, such as a different format for a written test, if necessary.

Conducting the Interview

  • Relax and make the applicant feel relaxed. If the applicant has a visible disability or reveals a disability during the interview, concentrate on the individual, not the disability.
  • Treat the individual with the same respect you would treat any candidate whose skills you are seeking. Likewise, hold individuals with disabilities to the same standards as all applicants.
  • Ask only job-related questions that speak to the functions of the job for which the applicant is applying.
  • Concentrate on the applicant's technical and professional knowledge, skills, abilities, experiences and interests.

Do not try to imagine how you would perform a specific job if you had the applicant's disability. He or she has mastered alternate ways of living and working. If the applicant has a known disability, either because it is obvious or was revealed by the applicant, you may ask him or her to describe how he or she would perform the job.  Contact the Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion if you have concerns about whether an applicant's disability might keep him or her from performing essential job functions.  Often, accommodations can enable a candidate with a disability to perform the job.  

Resources

A number of on- and off-campus resources can assist employers in understanding their responsibilities relative to interviewing job applicants with disabilities.

Office of Accessibility Resources (AR) - (716) 645-2608

AR coordinates services and accommodations to ensure the accessibility and usability of all UB programs, services, and activities by people with disabilities.

Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) - (716) 645-2266

EDI can provide assistance on compliance with UB's Reasonable Accommodation Policy, provides accommodations to applicants with disabilities, and will give guidance about how to ensure that the hiring process is inclusive of people with disabilities.

Access-VR - (800) 222-JOBS (5627)

Access-VR assists individuals with disabilities to achieve and maintain employment and to support independent living through training, education, rehabilitation, and career development.  Access-VR programs allow public employers like UB to identify qualified individuals for temporary or permanent positions, and may cover some costs toward employing individuals with disabilities through its programs.

Job Accommodation Network (JAN) - (800) 526-7234 (V/TTY)

JAN is a free, confidential service from the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) that provides information on job accommodations for people with disabilities, the employment provisions of the ADA and other related legislation.

Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion (EARN) -  (855) 275-3276 (V/TTY)

EARN is a free, confidential service from ODEP that connects employers seeking workers with qualified candidates with disabilities and offers technical assistance to employers on issues relating to hiring and employing individuals with disabilities.