Many people are under the impression that the blind and/or visually impaired can only work in specific jobs. But the truth is that with a little bit of accommodation, the blind and visually impaired can be successful in any job they dream of.
Ask the Employee
Reasonable accommodations must be decided on a case-by-case basis depending on the individual employee’s needs. Employers should talk with the employee about whatever tools are necessary for the employee to accomplish his or her job.
Accommodations may include:
The Americans with Disabilities Act
The Americans with Disabilities Act requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to enable blind or visually impaired employees to perform the functions to the job in which they are currently working or for which they are applying.
Accommodations may include making existing facilities accessible, job restructuring, acquiring or modifying existing equipment and reassigning a vacant position. After a request for reasonable accommodations, the employer and employee should discuss the situation to clarify the needs of the employee.
The ADA provides tax credits to small businesses for hiring a disabled employee that will cover 50 percent of eligible expenditures on accommodations over $250 up to $10,000 (the maximum amount of credit per year = $5,000). If the eligible credit exceeds the amount of taxes owed, business may carry the unused portion of the credit to the next year.
Federal and state governments also offer several tax credits to employers for hiring the disabled.