Access for All Weekly Tip
For the week of September 17 - 21
Pregnancy affects women in different ways. Some women experience no, or very few, limitations affecting their ability to work. Others may experience limitations that lead to the need for accommodations. For example, fatigue, sickness, or pain may impact attendance; restrictions in lifting, standing, or bending may affect ability to meet the physical demands of a job; or the need to eat and drink frequently, or wear more comfortable clothing may affect adherence to certain policies. Limitations can sometimes result from pregnancy-related complications, like gestational diabetes, back pain, high blood pressure (known as preeclampsia), urinary tract infections, severe dehydration, and depression. Also, pregnancy and childbirth may exacerbate existing medical impairments.
The following is an overview of some of the accommodations that might be useful for employees who are pregnant or nursing.
- Allow for longer or more frequent work breaks to use the restroom
- Provide a private rest area to lie down during breaks
- Modify policy to allow eating/drinking at workstation/around facility to increase caloric intake and keep hydrated
- Reduce or eliminate physical exertion and workplace stress
- Implement ergonomic workstation design
- Allow work from home
- Provide lumbar pillow/back rest/foot rest
- Increase natural light
Call Oklahoma ABLE Tech (800-257-1705) for accommodation ideas or to borrow assistive technology. ABLE Tech’s AT Device Demonstration and Short-Term Loan Program works just like a book library. Here are some devices that relate to this article:
Need funding to assist in the purchase of assistive devices? Oklahoma ABLE Tech offers a comprehensive online guide for Oklahoma Funding for AT. Additionally, ABLE Tech, in partnership with Oklahoma Assistive Technology Foundation (OkAT) and BancFirst of Stillwater, offers Financial Loans to purchase assistive technology. Several programs of funding are available, all with LOW interest rate and flexible repayment terms, as well as special qualification opportunities for applicants who might not qualify for a traditional bank loan. For questions on the Financial Loan opportunities, call Shelley Gladden for more information at 800-257-1705.
Rob Carr, Accessibility Coordinator
Linda Jaco, Associate Director for Sponsored Programs