Reasonable Accommodation

Reasonable Accommodation

About the program

NOAA’s Office of Human Capital Services organized the Reasonable Accommodation Program for all NOAA customers. The NOAA Reasonable Accommodation Program is prepared to provide guidance to NOAA supervisors and employees on inquiries or requests regarding reasonable accommodation.

In accordance with established Equal Employment Opportunity and Non-discrimination law, NOAA  has a legal obligation to provide reasonable accommodation(s) concerning the known physical or mental limitations of qualified employees, applicants, and visitors with disabilities unless it can be shown that such accommodation(s) would impose an undue hardship.

A Reasonable Accommodation is any change or modification in the work environment or in the way things are customarily done, including an exception to a particular office policy and/or procedures, which would enable a qualified individual with a disability to apply for a position, perform the essential functions of a position, and/or enjoy equal employment opportunities.

Contact the Reasonable Accommodation Office

NOAA’s Office of Human Capital Services is staffed with skilled Reasonable Accommodation Coordinators (RAC) who work in collaboration with NOAA managers and employees to provide well informed guidance and assistance with processing RA requests. The mission of the RA program is to ensure that NOAA provides every employee the requisite tools that will enable each and every employee to perform at their very best. Contact the Reasonable Accommodation Office at

Reasonable Accomodation Resources

Statutes & Authorities

Reasonable Accommodation Policy and Procedures

NOAA follows the Department of Commerce's policy and procedures on reasonable accommodation which have been developed and approved in accordance with Executive Order 13164 requirements of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Department of Commerce Policy on Reasonable Accommodation

Executive Order 13164

Establishing Procedures to Facilitate the Provision of Reasonable Accommodation

Executive Order 13164 directs all federal agencies to establish procedures to facilitate the provision of reasonable accommodation to employees and job applicants with disabilities. Pursuant to this Executive Order, and DOJ’s continuing obligations under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Attorney General has issued these guidelines for use by all components in the Department. Each component shall establish procedures for implementing these Guidelines.

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)

Enforcement Guidance: Reasonable Accommodation and Undue Hardship Under the Americans with Disabilities Act

The EEOC Enforcement Guidance clarifies the rights and responsibilities of employers and individuals with disabilities regarding reasonable accommodation and undue hardship. This Guidance examines what "reasonable accommodation" means and who is entitled to receive it. The Guidance addresses what constitutes a request for reasonable accommodation, the form and substance of the request, and an employer's ability to ask questions and seek documentation after a request has been made.

Policy Guidance on Executive Order 13164

Code of Federal Regulation 29

CFR 29 1630 - Regulations to Implement the Equal Employment Provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act

CFR 29 1614.203 - Regulations to Implement the Equal Employment Provisions of the Rehabilitation Act

Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Rehab Act), as amended

Review of Sections: 501, 503, 504, and 508

The Rehabilitation Act prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in programs conducted by Federal agencies, in programs receiving Federal financial assistance, in Federal employment, and in the employment practices of Federal contractors.

Targeted Services 

Personal Assistance Services (PAS)

Department of Commerce Procedures for Providing Personal Assistance Services  

As part of the Department of Commerces obligation to engage in affirmative action, Federal agencies are required by the new regulations to provide Personal Assistance Services (PAS), in addition to reasonable accommodations, to employees who need them because of certain disabilities. PAS are services that help individuals who, because of certain targeted disabilities, require assistance to perform basic activities of daily living, like eating and using the restroom, to fully participate in the workplace.

Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility

Department of Commerce Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Policy

All IT systems and electronic information developed, procured, maintained or used by the Department of Commerce must comply with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act, unless an undue burden is determined, in which case, the information and data shall be provided by an alternate method or format.

Ready to request an Accommodation? 

To Request a (Disability) Accommodation:  

Submit your request using the on-line tracking system, Entellitrak (ETK) Access Portal offsite link

The User Registration page is a public page that is accessible by non-authenticated users that allow them to enter required information in order to create an            account on the system. For user information, please review the eFile User’s Guide. offsite link

Medical Documentation:

If your disability is not obvious, medical documentation that supports your request is required.  Please ask your healthcare provider to write you a letter addressing the information as outlined in the Medical Documentation Guidelines offsite link.  This document outlines what documentation is required and defines who the documentation should be provided by. 

Additional Documentation:

Download and complete the FOH Authorization form offsite link. This authorization will be used in the event our office needs the Federal Occupational Health (FOH) to assist the agency in determining what/if any accommodation(s) may be offered. 

Submitting your Documentation:

You may upload your supporting medical documentation and your completed FOH authorization form directly into ETK.  To ensure your supporting documentation has been received, you should send an email to the Reasonable Accommodation Office at and convey which documents were uploaded.     

A Reasonable Accommodation Coordinator (RAC) will review your request carefully and initiate an interactive communication with you and/or your supervisor to facilitate an effective and timely processing of your request.

Internal Resources for NOAA Employees

NOAA Reasonable Accommodation Page offsite link