The Americans with Disabilities Act requires that people with disabilities are able to receive and communicate information as effectively as people without disabilities. One of the ways Portland ensures it is effectively communicating with people with disabilities is by providing at no charge appropriate communication aids and services. Examples of appropriate aids and services Portland could provide include: accessible electronic documents; assistive listening devices; braille documents; captions; a reader/transcriber; sign language; and other ways of making communications and information accessible to people who have cognitive, speech, hearing, and/or visual disabilities.
Modifications to Policies and Procedures
Introduction of Reasonable Modification
Portland will reasonably modify its policies, practices, and procedures so people with disabilities can access City activities, facilities, and services; furthermore, Portland will provide reasonable modifications quickly, easily, and without requiring proof of disability.
Defining Reasonable Modification
A reasonable modification is a change or exception to policy, practice, or procedure that allows people with disabilities to have equal access to the activities, programs, and services offered by Portland. Reasonable modifications must always be related to an existing disability; for example, a modification to allow electric wheelchairs in an area where electric vehicles are not normally allowed will not be granted unless someone using an electric wheelchair plans to access the area in question.
When requesting a reasonable modification to a policy, practice, or procedure, an individual with a disability is not required to provide medical documentation or information about a diagnosis, but they must be able to explain how their disability relates to the requested modification.
Examples of Reasonable Modifications
City Hall modifies its “no pets” policy to allow service animals to enter
Allowing the user of an electric wheelchair to use their chair in locations where electric vehicles are banned
Allowing an exception to the City’s setback rule so an individual with a disability can install a wheelchair ramp in front of their home
Assisting someone with a cognitive disability in understanding and completing a City form
Although circumstances where Portland would deny a requested aid or service or a modification are rare, two possibilities could lead to a denial:
Granting the request would fundamentally alter the essential nature of the activity, program, or service
Granting the request would result in undue administrative and financial burdens
If Portland must deny a requested aid or service or a requested modification, every effort will be made to ensure accessibility and inclusivity.
Requesting an Appropriate Aid or Service or a Modification
There are four places you can go if you want to request an aid to make communication more effective, or if you want to request a policy, practice, or procedure be modified:
If you know the person directly running the activity, program, or service in question, it’s best to start there.
If you do not know who is running the activity, program, or service in question, call 311 and you will be directed to the right person.
Complete the online Request an ADA Accommodation form.
If you have questions about requesting an appropriate aid or service, or about a possible modification, contact Nickole Cheron, ADA Title II and Disability Equity Manager at Nickole.email@example.com.
There are three ways you can file a complaint about the accessibility of an activity, program, or service offered by Portland:
Contact the ADA Coordinator for the bureau running the activity, program, or service in question.
If you do not know who to contact, call 311 and you will be directed to the right person.
If you have questions about Portland’s complaint process, contact Portland’s ADA Title II and disability equity manager Nickole Cheron at Nickole.Cheron@PortlandOregon.gov.