Presentation on theme: "Building an Inclusive Volunteer Program. AmeriCorps Created by President Clinton in 1993; expanded by President Bush National service organization Emphasizes."— Presentation transcript:
Building an Inclusive Volunteer Program
AmeriCorps Created by President Clinton in 1993; expanded by President Bush National service organization Emphasizes civic education and public service. Members work on projects ranging from public education to environmental cleanup
Everybody can be great…because anybody can serve. -Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Defining Disability Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): A physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities A history or record of such an impairment Being regarded as having such an impairment, even when no limitations exist Someone who has an association with someone with a disability
What is a major life activity? A major life activity is anything an average person can do with little difficulty e.g. walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, sleeping, thinking, interacting with others, etc.
What is a substantial limitation? …something that makes it extremely difficult to perform an activity (compared to an average person). Factors to consider: 1) Its nature and severity 2) How long it is expected to last 3) Its expected long-term impact
Things specifically excluded: Current drug use is not protected by the ADA Temporary, non-chronic impairments that do not last for a long time and have little long term impact
Did you know? 19.5 million Americans (roughly 10%) have a disability Roughly 380,000 Iowans (13.5%) have a disability Approximately 35% of Americans with disabilities are employed
Why should I build an inclusive volunteer program? How do I build an inclusive volunteer program?
Recruitment Think about the image you present of your organization: What do you say in your brochures and fliers? What images do you put on your posters and on your website? Where do you go looking for volunteers to recruit?
Recruitment - Words We are an E/O program. Qualified individuals with disabilities and those from diverse backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply. We provide reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals and conduct all activities in fully accessible settings.
Recruitment - Words Use people first language person who is deaf, person who is epileptic, etc. People are defined by their personhood, not their disability Better yet, just use names instead of labels!
Recruitment - Images Include images of people with disabilities performing volunteer work with your organization Send a message that your organization welcomes and values the contributions of all volunteers!
Recruitment - Formats Where do you post your volunteer listing? Who can access it? You can reach a larger audience if you make your information available in multiple formats. It doesnt have to be fancy – even picking a bigger font size could help!
Recruitment – where should I go? Disability organizations College and University offices for students with disabilities US Department of Veterans Affairs Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies
Who is a qualified individual? Qualified means that a person can: perform the essential functions of your volunteer position, and meets whatever certification requirements you may have. A person may be qualified with or without accommodations
Who is a qualified individual? When drafting position descriptions and volunteer postings, remember that someone may be able to perform an essential function in an unexpected way!
Being Inclusive – Descriptions Ask yourself, what is essential? Why do we have this volunteer position? What function are volunteers supposed to perform? Ask yourself, what is marginal? Could the volunteer trade a problematic task with another volunteer?
The Interview – Good Questions Can you perform the essential functions of this position, with or without accommodation? Can you describe how you would perform the following job functions? How would you…? What would you do if…? How long would it take you to…?
The Interview – Bad Questions Do you have a disability? Do you have any physical or mental impairments that would limit your ability to do everything were asking? What medical conditions do you have?
More interviewing hints: Volunteer that accommodations are available prior to the interview Remember that not everyone with a disability needs an accommodation Do not ask for details about a requested accommodation during an interview – just make sure the interviewee knows that reasonable accommodations are available upon request Ask the same questions of everyone
Disclosure Remember, every person should have the opportunity to choose to disclose – or not disclose – information about his or her disabilities People may not disclose for a number of reasons: fear of negative reactions or treatment; belief it isnt relevant; perceived stigma; fear of gossip, etc.
Disclosure Information about a disclosed disability must be kept confidential – it cant be disclosed to other people. Further disclosure is only appropriate if the individual approves (consider making this verifiable!)
Accommodations An accommodation is a modification or adjustment to the work environment that enables an individual with a disability to perform an essential function of a job or volunteer position
Accommodations The Rehabilitation Act and Americans with Disabilities Act requires many programs to require reasonable accommodations
Watch the details! handicapped Allegedly derives from a history of people with disabilities having to beg cap in hand because they couldnt work wheelchair bound Advocates view wheelchairs as a means for mobility and freedom – not a restriction
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