Reasonable accommodations for mental health problems
Work can be part of the recovery process. It provides all of us with important protective factors for our health, such as: routine, structure to day, social relationships, mental stimulus, self-esteem, activity, and a sense of wellbeing.
Changes in communication
Arrange for work requests to be put in writing for a worker who becomes anxious and confused when given verbal instructions.
Train a supervisor to provide positive feedback along with criticisms of performance, for an employee reentering the work force who needs to be reassured of their abilities after a long psychiatric hospitalisation.
Allow a worker who personalizes negative comments about their work performance to provide a self-appraisal before receiving feedback from a supervisor.
Schedule daily planning sessions with a co-worker at the start of each day to develop hourly goals for someone who functions best with a clear time structure.
Modifications to the physical environment
Provide room dividers for a worker who has difficulty maintaining concentration (and thus accuracy) in an open work area.
Arrange for someone who cannot drive or use public transport to work at home.
Restructure a receptionist job by eliminating lunchtime switchboard duty.
Exchange problematic secondary tasks for part of another employee’s job description.
Allow a worker with poor physical stamina to extend their schedule to allow for additional breaks or rest periods during the day.
Allow a worker to shift their schedule to attend psychotherapy appointments.
(adapted from Mancuso 1990)