Fort McCoy News February 28, 2014

CAP bridges barriers associated with disabilities

Recognizing the potential of its workforce, the Department of Defense (DOD) established the Computer/Electronic Accommodations Program (CAP) to eliminate employment barriers for people with disabilities.

CAP's mission, since its inception in 1990, is to provide assistive technology and accommodations to ensure people with disabilities and wounded service members have equal access to the information environment and opportunities in the DOD and throughout the federal government.

Logo of CAP

Today, CAP has expanded beyond DOD to partner with 68 federal agencies making it the largest provider of reasonable accommodations in the world.

The program's vision is to increase employment of people with disabilities and disabled veterans by ensuring they have access to accommodations throughout DOD and federal government.

Through CAP's Wounded Service Member (WSM) Initiative, CAP provides needs assessments, assistive technology and training to support wounded, ill and injured service members throughout all phases of recovery and transition to employment, directly impacting their rehabilitation process.

By implementing DOD Instruction 6025.22, assistive technology (AT) for wounded service members, CAP partners with military treatment facilities to integrate AT into the recovery and seamless transition process.

CAP does this by paying for and providing a wide variety of assistive technology for people with hearing, visual, dexterity, cognitive and communication disabilities.

While CAP mainly focuses on purchasing assistive technology for employees with disabilities, it also supports federal employees throughout the employment lifecycle, including coming to work, staying at work and returning to work to help ensure the federal government is the model employer of people with disabilities and wounded service members.

Frequently requested accommodation solutions include videophones, personal-amplification devices, screen-magnification software, screen readers, cueing/memory aids, literacy software, alternative keyboards, pointing devices, and speech-recognition software.

The process for WSM and federal employee customers to identify and request accommodations through CAP is simple.
Customers who already know what accommodations they need can use an online request form available at www.cap.mil/wsm (wounded service members) or www.cap.mil (federal employees).

Customers who need solutions identified have a number of options.

The WSM team also visits a number of military installations throughout the year to conduct on-site needs assessments.

The CAP Technology Education Center, located at the Pentagon room 2D1049, will conduct in-person, phone, and video teleconference needs assessments.

For customers not located in the Washington, D.C. metro area who need an on-site assessment, one can be requested through the online request form at www.cap.mil/wsm (wounded service members) or www.cap.mil (federal employees).

Once solutions have been identified, all requests can be made through the same online request form.

The CAP office is available to answer any disability- or accommodation-related questions.

The CAP staff works with individuals to ensure the federal community complies with federal laws and assists in creating a more accessible information environment.

CAP is committed to giving service members the tools to prepare them for employment opportunities in the public or private sectors by allowing them to maximize their abilities.

CAP offers a number of online tools to help customers, including:
• Online training: A series of online training modules to help federal employers understand how simple and beneficial hiring employees with disabilities can be.
• Assistive technology videos: A series of short videos to demonstrate available assistive technology.
• CAP mobile app: Stay up to date on new assistive technology, disability events and more on the go.
• Social Media: Stay connected with CAP on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

For more information or to use the online tools, visit www.cap.mil, contact CAP at 703-614-8416 (Voice) or via email at cap.wsm@mail.mil (wounded service member) cap@mail.mil (federal employees).

(Submitted by DOD CAP.)