Interviewing Courtesies for Individuals with Disabilities
Persons Using Mobility Aids
- Make sure the interview location is accessible.
Check on location of available disabled parking
spaces, available ramps and elevators, and
accessible restrooms, water fountains and
- Enable people who use crutches, canes or wheelchairs
to keep them within reach. Be aware that some
wheelchair users may choose to transfer themselves
out of their wheelchair into an office chair
for the interview.
- When interviewing a person in a wheelchair, sit
in a chair to place yourself at that person's
eye level to facilitate conversation.
- Never touch or lean on a person's wheelchair.
It is part of the body space that belongs to
the person who uses it.
People with Vision Impairments
- When greeting a person with a vision impairment,
always identify yourself and introduce anyone
else who is present.
- Allow a person with a visual impairment to take
your arm at or about the elbow. This will enable
you to guide rather than propel or lead the person.
- When offering seating, provide verbal directions
as to the location of the seat.
- When conversing in a group, give a verbal cue
by always announcing the name of the person to
whom you are speaking.
- Let the person know if you move or need to end
- Never pet or distract a guide dog.
- If there will be written materials in the interview,
find out before the interview if there is an
alternative format the person would prefer such
as large print, Braille or tape recording.
People with Speech Impairments
- Allow time for the person to speak. Exercise
patience rather than attempting to speak
for the person or complete their sentences
- Do not pretend to understand if you do not. Ask
the person to repeat what you do not understand.
- Do not shout or raise your voice.
People who are Deaf or Hearing Impaired
- If the person lip-reads, look directly at
them. Speak clearly at a normal pace. Do
not exaggerate your lip movements or shout.
Speak expressively because the person will
rely on your facial expressions, gestures
and body movements to understand you. Maintain
- Place yourself facing the light source and keep
your hands away from your mouth when speaking.
- Use a normal tone of voice. Only raise your voice
if requested. Brief concise written notes may
- Using a Sign Language Interpreter
- If an interpreter is present, the
interpreter should be seated beside
the interviewer, across from the
- Speak to the interviewee, not to
the interpreter and always maintain
eye contact with the interviewee,
not the interpreter.
- The interpreter will be at least
a few words behind the speaker, so
allow for the extra time before the
interviewee begins to respond.
- Interpreters facilitate communication.
They should not be consulted or regarded
as a reference for the interviewee.
- To request Sign Language
Interpreting Services for
an interview, contact the Interpreter
Coordinator at Disability Services, email@example.com.
Phone 206-543-6450; 206-543-6452/TTY;
206-685-7264/Fax at least 10
working days prior to when services
are required. You may ask the
interviewee if he or she has
a preferred interpreter, and
provide this information to the
Interpreter Coordinator when
placing the request