State and local agencies should indicate protocols to allow employees with disabilities to telework during emergency situations to mitigate additional challenges brought on by the extenuating circumstances (such as traveling to the office during a storm).
State and local agencies may want to consider allowing employers and employees to customize particular aspects of telework agreements, such as telework schedule, telework location, telework duration, communication methods and means of securing and transporting equipment, to better account for an individual's unique situation.
Related to the management of telework programs, state and local agencies may want to consider training managers around facilitating effective telework policies and best practices, especially related to supporting people with different needs. Agencies should also consider designating someone — such as the ADA Coordinator — to coordinate and manage telework accessibility issues.
States and localities should allow employees flexibility in acquiring and utilizing technology to provide the proper equipment and better meet the needs of employees.
State and local policymakers and government agencies should provide guidelines and require clear documentation to ensure telework requests are handled transparently and reduce discrimination in telework denials and approvals.
Policymakers may want to consider explicitly indicating how telework policies apply to individuals with disabilities, whether they are meant to be inclusive or need to be modified, so that employees and managers better understand and engage with telework policies.
To create disability-inclusive telework programs, state policymakers and agencies may want to consider three main principles: clarity in expectations and procedures; flexibility in accommodating individual situations, where needed; and universal design in the creation of policies and the selection of telework tools that take into consideration the functional needs and abilities of the greatest numbers of people.