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Training methods and topics for hospitality employees with disabilities: Managers' attitudes and perceived knowledge

Dissertation
Author: Paola Paez
Abstract:
People with disabilities are a viable segment of the population from which hospitality managers can hire employees. Once hired, hospitality managers must assure adequate training for all employees; training is an important human resource management function that can increase productivity in any organization. This study aimed to assess current training topics and methods used with employees with disabilities, as well as managers' knowledge and attitudes about people with disabilities, in hotels, restaurants, and school foodservice operations in the United States. Interviews and questionnaires were used for data collection. Questionnaire respondents gave a neutral response (mean rating 3.30 on a scale where 1 = strongly disagree to 5 = strongly agree) to knowledge questions about disability-related topics such as specific types of disabilities, training for specific types of disabilities, Americans with Disability Act (ADA), federal and state benefits of hiring people with disabilities, reasonable accommodations, legal issues, hiring process for disabled people, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's (EEOC) role. Topics with the highest mean ratings were: knowledgeable about ADA (3.68), physical disabilities (3.66), mental disabilities (3.52), and reasonable accommodation (3.46). The training methods most commonly used, as reported by questionnaire respondents, were on-the-job training (96%), demonstrations (78%), and self-guided training (53%). The training tools most commonly used were text and manuals (68%); audio/video tapes, DVDs, and CDs (53%); and computer programs (40%). The most commonly reported training topics for hotel and restaurant employees were cleaning procedures (93%), customer service (93%), equipment usage/cleaning (88%), knowledge of product (87%), and communication skills (85%). The most commonly reported training topics for school foodservice employees were food safety (99%), cleaning procedures (99%), equipment usage/cleaning (97%), handling of food (97%), and food preparation (96%). Attitudinal questions were analyzed for the two groups: commercial (hotels and restaurants) and noncommercial (school foodservices). In general, hotel and restaurant managers and school foodservice authorities had a neutral attitude toward employees with disabilities with means of 3.26 and 3.31, respectively. Factor analysis was conducted and correlations were calculated to ensure there was a significant correlation between the statements within each factor. For both groups, four factors with loadings higher than 0.400 were extracted. Factors were named based on the items included in each one of them. Factor 1 was named "Teamwork and Costs," factor 2 "Training," factor 3 was labeled "Characteristics," and factor 4 "Skills." Mean scores were computed for each of the four attitudinal factors. The mean score for Factor 4 (Skills) was the highest of the four factors for both groups. For the hotel and restaurant group, statistically significant differences (p ≤ .001) were found between mean scores for factor 1 (Teamwork and Costs) and ethnicity of participants (Caucasian or other ethnicity); Caucasians had a higher mean (3.23). Mean scores for Factor 4 (Skills) were statistically significant (p ≤ .05) based on age and number of years working for the current organization. Hotel and restaurant managers' ages and number of years working for their current organization had an effect on their attitudes toward employees with disabilities in relation to the importance of providing training on specific skills. For the school group, statistically significant differences (p ≤. 05) were found between mean scores for Factor 4 (Skills) and ethnicity of participants (Caucasian or other ethnicity); respondents from the non-Caucasian subgroup had the higher mean (4.18). This study provides information for hospitality industry managers about training methods and topics currently used. Managers' ages and years worked for the current organization had an effect on attitudes related to the importance of training people with disabilities. Ethnicity had an effect on attitudes related to teamwork. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)

TABLE OF CONTENTS CHAPTER 1. INTRODUCTION .......................................................................................... 1 Statement of the Problem ...................................................................................................... 2 Purpose of the Study ............................................................................................................. 2 Definitions of Terms ............................................................................................................. 3 Dissertation Organization ..................................................................................................... 5 References ............................................................................................................................. 5 CHAPTER 2. REVIEW OF LITERATURE ....................................................................... 7 Introduction ........................................................................................................................... 7 Definition of Disability ......................................................................................................... 8 Employment and Disability .................................................................................................. 9 Accommodations ................................................................................................................ 13 Attitudes Toward People with Disabilities ......................................................................... 14 Training ............................................................................................................................... 18 Training Needs Assessment ............................................................................................ 18 Training and Disabilities ................................................................................................. 19 Disability in the Hospitality Industry .................................................................................. 22 References ........................................................................................................................... 26 CHAPTER 3. METHODOLOGY ....................................................................................... 30 Human Subjects .................................................................................................................. 30 Research Design ................................................................................................................. 31 Interviews ............................................................................................................................ 31 Sample Selection ............................................................................................................. 31 Content ............................................................................................................................ 32 Procedures ....................................................................................................................... 32 Data Analyses ................................................................................................................. 33 Questionnaires .................................................................................................................... 33 Sample Selection ............................................................................................................. 33 Questionnaire Content .................................................................................................... 34 Questionnaire Development ............................................................................................ 35 Pilot Study ....................................................................................................................... 37 Questionnaire Distribution .............................................................................................. 37 Data Analyses ................................................................................................................. 38 References ........................................................................................................................... 39 CHAPTER 4. PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES IN THE HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY: TRAINING METHODS AND MANAGERS’ ATTITUDES ........................................... 40 Abstract ............................................................................................................................... 40 Introduction ......................................................................................................................... 40 Literature Review ............................................................................................................... 41

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Methodology ....................................................................................................................... 45 Results and Discussion ....................................................................................................... 48 Conclusions ......................................................................................................................... 54 Limitations and Future Research ........................................................................................ 56 References ........................................................................................................................... 57 CHAPTER 5. TRAINING: AN OPPORTUNITY FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES IN SCHOOL FOODSERVICE OPERATIONS .................................... 65 Abstract ............................................................................................................................... 65 Introduction ......................................................................................................................... 66 Methodology ....................................................................................................................... 68 Results and Discussion ....................................................................................................... 69 Conclusions and Applications ............................................................................................ 73 References ........................................................................................................................... 76 Summary of Results ............................................................................................................ 83 Conclusions ......................................................................................................................... 85 Limitations .......................................................................................................................... 86 Future Research .................................................................................................................. 86 Implications ........................................................................................................................ 87 References ........................................................................................................................... 87 APPENDIX A: HUMAN SUBJECTS APPROVAL .......................................................... 88 APPENDIX B. QUESTIONNAIRE COVER LETTER.................................................... 89 APPENDIX C: INTERVIEW CONTACT SCRIPT ......................................................... 90 APPENDIX D: MANAGERS/SUPERVISORS INTERVIEW GUIDE .......................... 91 APPENDIX E: DEMOGRAPHIC INFORMATION OF INTERVIEW PARTICIPANTS................................................................................................................... 92 APPENDIX F. INTERVIEW CONSENT FORM ............................................................. 94 APPENDIX G: ATLAST ti. VISUAL REPRESENTATION OF THEMES .................. 97 APPENDIX H. PAPER VERSION OF QUESTIONNAIRE .......................................... 100 APPENDIX I: ONLINE VERSION OF QUESTIONNAIRE ........................................ 105 APPENDIX J: PERMISSION TO USE BASE QUESTIONNAIRE ............................. 114 APPENDIX K: PILOT TEST EVALUATION PAPER QUESTIONNAIRE .............. 115 APPENDIX L: PILOT TEST EVALUATION ONLINE QUESTIONNAIRE ............ 116 APPENDIX M: QUESTIONNAIRE FOLLOW-UP CARD .......................................... 117 APPENDIX N. MODIFIED COVER LETTER .............................................................. 118 APPENDIX O: EMAIL COVER LETTER ..................................................................... 119

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APPENDIX P. INTERVIEW PARTICIPANTS QUOTES: DEFINITION OF DISABILITIES ................................................................................................................... 120 APPENDIX Q: KNOWLEDGE QUESTIONS MEANS ................................................ 122 ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ............................................................................................... 123

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LIST OF FIGURES Figure 6. 1. Atlas ti. Visual Representation of Themes for Hotel Managers .......................... 97 Figure 6. 2. Atlas ti. Visual Representation of Themes for Restaurant Managers ................. 98 Figure 6. 3. Atlas ti. Visual Representation of Themes for School Foodservice Authorities............................................................................................................................... 99

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LIST OF TABLES Table 4. 1. Demographic Characteristics of Hotel and Restaurant Managers ........................ 60 Table 4. 2.Training Methods, Topics, and Tools Reported to be Used by Hotel and Restaurant Managers ............................................................................................................... 61 Table 4. 3. Hotel and Restaurant Managers Mean Ratings for Attitudes towards People with Disabilities Statements by Identified Factors ......................................................................... 62 Table 4. 4. Correlations between Statements for Factor 1: Teamwork and Costs .................. 63 Table 4. 5. Correlations between Statements for Factor 2: Training ...................................... 64 Table 4. 6. Correlations between Statements for Factor 3: Characteristics ............................ 64 Table 4. 7. Correlations between Statements for Factor 4: Skills ........................................... 64 Table 5. 1. Demographic Characteristics of School Foodservice Participants ....................... 79 Table 5. 2. Training Methods, Topics, and Tools Reported to be Used by School Foodservice Participants .............................................................................................................................. 80 Table 5. 3. School Foodservice Participants Attitudes Towards Training People with Disabilities .............................................................................................................................. 81 Table 5. 4. School Foodservice Participants Attitudes Towards People with Disabilities ..... 82 Table 6. 1. Mean Ratings for Knowledge Questions: responses from School Foodservice, Hotel, and Restaurant Participants ........................................................................................ 122

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CHAPTER 1. INTRODUCTION The passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) provided opportunities for people with disabilities to become more involved in society (U.S. Department of Justice [USDJ], 1990). ―Anyone with a physical or mental impairment substantially limiting one or more major life activities; has a record of such impairment; or is regarded as having such impairment, is considered a person with a disability‖ (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission [EEOC], 1991, p. 2). According to 2000 U.S. census data, 17% of the U.S. population has disabilities; about 43 million Americans have one or more physical and/or mental disabilities. Of those who reported having a disability and were between 16 to 64 years of age, 21 million (11.9%) reported a condition that affected their ability to find a job or remain in one; 56% of those with disabilities were employed as compared to 88% of people without disabilities (U.S. Census Bureau, 2007). Hospitality companies are looking for various ways to create a more diverse workforce. Diversity includes not only different cultures, races, and genders; people with disabilities are part of this diversity concept. The employment of people with disabilities could be a viable alternative for managers to diversify their workforces. The adoption of the ADA in 1990 changed the way people with disabilities could participate in society and the workforce (Price, Gerber, & Mulligan, 2007). Hospitality organizations often prefer to hire part-time employees, and part- time work schedules facilitate the incorporation of employees with disabilities (Groschl, 2007 ). A number of employees with disabilities work late or rotation shifts; however, day shift employees and most night shift employees with disabilities receive lower hourly wages than do employees without disabilities (Presser & Altman, 2002). Incorporating people with disabilities into the workplace presents challenges to human reso urces departments because of the complexities of defining, accommodating, and understanding disabilities ( Groschl, 2007). Employers have the responsibility to make sure employees with disabilities have the

same tools and opportunities as other employees have to succeed . Training is an important component of human resources management and has been demonstrated to increase

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companies‘ performance (Barrett & O‘Conell, 2001; Ubeda, 2005). Accommodations may be necessary to help employees with disabilities in their training processes (EEOC, 2004). The hospitality industry needs qualified and skilled workers in order to compete. Groschl (2004) found that, due to the continuous growth in the hotel industry and the need for qualified employees, people with disabilities represent an important labor source for hotel organizations. Disabled employees can learn the necessary skills to perform their jobs and contribute to the success of organizations. Statement of the Problem Human resources managers are challenged when d efining and understanding disabilities and practices that have an impact on employing people with disabilities ( Groschl, 2007; Hignite, 2000). Besides the complexity of understanding disabilities, qualifying organizations (those with 15 or more employees, s tate and local governments; employment agencies; and labor unions ) encounter potential legal implications associated with hiring disabled employees. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission provided broader protections for workers with disabilities when amending the ADA by extending the definition of the term ―disabled‖ (EEOC, 2008). As of January 2009, more employees could be defined as having disabilities under the ADA. In addition to the legal aspect, there is limited awareness, understanding , and communication between people with and those without disabilities (Groschl, 2007; Hignite, 2000). Groschl (2007 ), in a Canadian study, found that improving communication between workers with disabilities and workers without disabilities and educating people without disabilities might increase hotel managers‘ willingness to hire and integrate more of this sector of the population into the work force. Purpose of the Study The purpose of this study was to obtain the perceptions of hospitality industry managers‘ and supervisors‘ from one Midwestern state and determine their understanding of disability to help create a common definition. Once a definition was established, it served as the basis for an assessment of current training topics and training metho ds used with employees with disabilities, as well as managers‘ and supervisors‘ attitudes and knowledge

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about people with disabilities, in the hospitality industry (specifically retail foodservices and lodging operations). The results of this study provide information about managers‘ attitudes toward employees with disabilities in the hospitality industry and managers‘ knowledge about disability topics. The results also provide information to hospitality industry managers about current human resources practices such as training methods commonly used in the industry . This work presents information about potential professional development needs of current managers to better incorporate people with disabilities into their organizations. It can also help educato rs identify human resources management curriculum needs for hospitality management students who likely will work, at some point in their careers, with workers with disabilities. The specific objectives of this study were to: 1. Develop a definition for ―disa bility‖ based on terminology used in the hospitality industry. 2. Utilize the definition in developing a questionnaire to determine training topics and methods used for people with disabilities. 3. Assess managers‘ knowledge and attitudes toward people with disabilities. 4. Assess current training topics and methods used by hospitality employers for employees with disabilities. Definitions of Terms Terms used in this study are defined as follows: Accommodation: Any [reasonable] change or adjustment to a job, the work environment, or the way things usually are done that would allow [a disabled worker] to apply for a job, perform job functions, or enjoy equal access to benefits available to other individuals in the workplace‖ (EEOC, 2002, p. 9). Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): A federal law designed to eliminate discrimination against individuals with disabilities by mandating equal access to jobs, public accommodations, government services, public transpo rtation, and telecommunications. Private employers who have 15 or more employees; state and

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local governments; employment agencies; and labor unions must abide by the ADA (USDJ, 1990). Communication skills: Skills needed to use language (spoken or written) to interact with others (Wrench, McCroskey, & Richmond, 2008). Disability: A physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, a record of such an impairment, or being regarded as having such an impairment (EEOC, 2008). Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC): A federal agency with the goal of ending discrimination based on an individual‘s race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, or disability (EEOC, 2002). Major life activities: Activities that a person can perform with little or no difficulty; some examples are walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing , learning, performing manual tasks, caring for oneself, working, sitting, standing, lifting, or reading (USDJ, 1990). Mental impairment: ―Any mental or psychological disorder, such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities‖ (USDJ, 1990, p. 11). Methodological skills: Skills needed to follow procedures in the workplace (Geng-qing & Qu, 2003). Physical impairment: ―Any physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss affecting one or more of the following body systems: neurological, musculoskeletal, special sense organs, respiratory (including speech organs), cardiovascular, reproductive, digestive, genitourinary, hemic and lymphatic, skin, and endocrine‖ (USDJ, 1990, p.11). Social desirability bias: The tendency of respondents to answer in a way that will be viewed favorably by others (Fischer & Fick, 2003; Thompson & Phua, 2005). Social skills: Skills needed to interact with others; for example, cooperation, sharing, and following directions (Gresham & Elliot, 1984). Technical skills: Skills needed to perform jobs that require following a technique or procedure (Geng-qing & Qu, 2003).

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Training: Provision of practical skills and knowledge to increase a person‘s capability, capacity, and performance (Harris & Bonn, 2000). Dissertation Organization This dissertation comprises five additional chapters. Chapters 2 and 3 present the Literature Review and Methodology of the study, respectively. Chapter 4 is a journal article prepared for submission to the International Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Administration; I was involved in every phase of research from idea conception to data analysis, I took leadership in preparation of the manuscript. Dr. Arendt served as major professor, advised in every phase of research from idea conception to data analysis; advised through the manuscript preparation process. Chapter 5 is a journal article prepared for submission to the Journal of Child Nutrition Management; I was involved in every phase of research from idea conception to data analysis, I took leadership in preparation of the manuscript. Dr. Arendt served as major professor, advised in every phase of research from idea conception to data analysis; advised through the manuscript preparation process. Dr. Strohbehn was involved in every phase of research from idea conception to data analysis, contributed to manuscript preparation. The last chapter presents general conclusions for the study. References cited are listed at the end of each chapter. References Barrett, A., & O‘Conell, P. (2001). Does training generally work? The return to in- company training. Industrial & Labor Relations Review, 54, 647-663. Fischer, D., & Fick, C. (1993). Measuring social desirability: Short forms of the Marlowe- Crowne social desirability scale. Educational and Physiological Measurement, 53, 417- 424. Geng- qing, C., & Qu, H. (2003). Integrating persons with disabilities into the workforce: A study on employment of people with disabilities in foodservice industry. International Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Administration, 4, 59-83. Gresham, F. M. & Elliot, S.N. (1984). Assessment of social skills: A review of methods and issues. School Psychology Review, 13, 292-301. Groschl, S. (2004). Current human resource practices affecting the employment of persons with disabilities in selected Toronto hotels: A case study. International Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Administration, 5, 15-30. Groschl, S. (2007). An exploration of HR policies and practices affecting the integration of persons with disabilities in the hotel industry in major Canadian tourism destinations. Hospitality Management, 26, 666-686.

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Harris, K., & Bonn, M. (2000). Training tec hniques and tools: Evidence from the foodservice industry. Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Research, 24, 320-335. Hignite, K. (2000, December). The accessible association. Association Management, 47-43. Presser, H., B., & Altman, B. (2002). Work shifts and disability: A national view. Monthly Labor Review, 125(5), 11-24. Price, L., Gerber, P., & Mulligan, R. (2007). Adults with learning disabilities and the underutilization of the American with Disabilities Act. Remedial and Special Education, 28, 340-344. Thomson, E. R., & Phua, F. T. (2005). Reliability among senior managers of the Marlowe - Crowne short-form social desirability scale. Journal of Business and Psychology, 19 , 541-554. Ubeda, M. (2005). Training and business performance: The Spanish case. Th e International Journal of Human Resource Management, 16, 1691-1710. U.S. Census Bureau. (2007). American with disabilities act: July 26. Retrieved February 25, 2008 from the World Wide Web: http://www.census.gov/Press- Release/www/releases/archives/facts_for_features_special_editions/010102.html U.S. Department of Justice. (1990). American with Disabilities Act. Washington, D.C. Retrieved February 25, 2008 from the World Wide Web: http://www.census.gov/Press- Release/www/releases/archives/facts_for_features_special_editions/010102.html U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). (1991). The American with Disabilities Act: Your employment rights as an individual with a disability. Washington, D.C. U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. (2002). Enforceme nt guidance: reasonable accommodation and undue hardship under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Retrieved January 29, 2008 from the World Wide Web: http://www.eeoc.gov/policy/docs/accommodation.html#intro U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. (2004). Interim report on the best practices for the employment of people with disabilities in state government. Retrieved February 25, 2008 from the World Wide Web: http://www.eeoc.gov/initiatives/nfi/int_states_best_practices_report.html U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. (2008). Notice Concerning The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) Amendments Act Of 2008. Retrieved January 29, 2009 from the World Wide Web: http://www.eeoc.gov/ada/amendments_notice.html Wrench, J. S., McCroskey, J. C., & Richmond, V. P. (2008). Human communication in everyday life: Explanations and applications. Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon.

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CHAPTER 2. REVIEW OF LITERATURE Introduction People with disabilities continue to be discriminated against, and even with the adoption of the American with Disabilities Act, their employment rate remains low (Bruyere, 2000; U.S. Census Bureau, 2007). Training is an important human resource management function in any organization and could be a good tool to help incorporate people with disabilities into the workforce. Training represents an opportunity for people with disabilities to increase their skills and performance. The ADA (U.S. Department of Justice [USDJ], 1990) provided opportunities for people with disabilities to become more active in society by trying to diminish discrimination against people with disabilities. People with disabilities face disadvantages in our society from different perspectives, including economic and educational. Price, Gerber, and Mulligan (2007) noted that the ADA could be helpful for people with learning disabilities during job searches, job performance evaluations, and job advancement. The researchers mentioned that people with disabilities who do not use the ADA to their advantage are missing opportunities to become more active in the social environment. People have tended to isolate individuals with disabilities, and despite some efforts and legislation, discrimination against individuals with disabilities continues to be a serious problem. Areas where discrimination was reported as a problem were: employment, housing, public accommodations, education, transportation, communication, recreation, institutionalization, health services, voting, and access to public services (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission [EEOC], 2004). Limited understanding of the definition of disabilities has been a barrier t o incorporating people with disabilities into the workforce in Canada (Groschl, 2007) . Organizations need to consider the possibility of making accommodations to employ people with disabilities. Training is one human resources practice that has been associ ated with increased productivity and low turnover in organizations (Barrett & O‘Connell, 2001; Bartel, 1994). Finding training methods that are effective with the population with disabilities is important in order to increase involvement and development in the organization and to ensure continuity and productivity in the workforce.

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In a Canadian study, human resources departments identified challenges associated with the incorporation of those with disabilities into the workpla ce and found challenges were related to the complexity and limited understanding of the definition of disabilities (Groschl, 2007). Presser and Altman (2002) studied U.S. workers using data obtained from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey. The authors found a number of employees wit h disabilities worked late or rotation shifts; day employees with disabilities and most night shift employees received lower hourly wages than did employees without disabilities . The hospitality industry‘s flexible work schedules and low-skill entry-level jobs can facilitate the incorporation of disabled employees, making it beneficial for employee and employer. In addition, hospitality organizations often hire part-time employees (Groschl, 2007) , which can benefit employees with disabilities (Marcoullier, Smith, & Bordieri, 1987). For this study, previous research related to training methods for people with disabilities in the hospitality industry was reviewed. Literature was reviewed in the following areas: definition of disability, employment and disabil ity, training and disability, and disability in the hospitality industry. Definition of Disability The ADA defined an individual with a disability as someone who:  ―has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities;  has record of such an impairment; or  is regarded as having such an impairment‖ (EEOC, 1991, p. 2). Major life activities include walking, reading, bending, and communicating. In addition, major bodily functions, such as brain, neurological, circulato ry, and respiratory functions, are considered vital life activities. This three- part definition reflects general types of limitations experienced by people with disabilities. There is no listing of all conditions or diseases

determined to be physical or me ntal impairments; considering the variety of possible impairments, this would be difficult. In January of 2009, the ADA Amendment Act of 2008 took effect. This amendment to the ADA redefined who is considered disabled by expanding the definition of ―major life activities‖ and ―auxiliary aids and service‖ (EEOC, 2008).

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The World Health Organization (WHO; 1980), in the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health, defined ―impairments‖ as abnormalities of body or organ structures and functions; ―disabilities‖ as reductions of a person‘s abilities to perform basic tasks; and ―handicaps‖ as a person‘s experienced disadvantage to fulfill social roles. Some examples of impairments are: intellectual, language, aural, ocular, or disfiguration. Disabilities include locomotor activities, behavior, and communication aspects. Handicaps are related to orientation, physical independence, mobility, and social integration. Schur (2002) conducted a national study with a sample of working age people (18–64 years of age), 668 (42%) with disabilities and 924 (58%) without disabilities. Disability screening questions from the 2000 U.S. Census and the Harris Disability Questionnaire were used. In this study, the author presented a disabilities classification scheme based on activity limitation and functional impairments. The categories within the scheme were: sensory impairment, mobility impairment, mental impairment, other type of impairment, difficulty going outside alone, difficulty with activities inside home, and needing help with daily activities. The author found the following results reported by those sampled: sensory impairment, 41.1%; mobility impairment, 36.3%; mental impairment, 33.6%; other type of impairment, 66%; difficulty going outside, 18.5%; difficulty with activities inside home, 23.8%; and needed help with daily activities, 24.3%. Respondents, in some cases, reported more than one disability classification. Employment and Disability The ADA, enforced by the EEOC, states that no job discrimination should occur by covered organizations. Covered organizations are private employers with 15 or more employees; public employers, such as state and local governments; employment agencies; and labor unions (EEOC, 1991). The ADA states that no covered e ntity shall discriminate against a qualified individual with a disability because of the disability in regards to job application procedures, the hiring, advancement, or discharge of employees; employee compensation; job training; and other terms, conditions, and privileges of employment. (EEOC, 1996, p. 1). ―Qualified individual‖ refers to someone who can perform the essential functions of the position held or desired with or without reasonable accommodations. In the United States, of

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the 43 million peopl e classified as disabled, 56% of those with disabilities are employed as compared to 88% of people without disabilities (U.S. Census Bureau, 2007). In Iowa, of the total civilian noninstitutionalized population ages 16 and older, 15% (415,074) had some kind of disability and 6.3% reported that a disability made it difficult to find a job (State Data Center of Iowa, 2006). Bruyere (2000 ) conducted two research initiatives to examine employer practices in response to the employment provisions of Title I of t he ADA and related civil rights legislation. A state sample of human resource and equal employment opportunity personnel from public and private sectors were interviewed by phone . Of the seven possible barriers to employment and advancement of people with disabilities, lack of related experience was seen as the biggest barrier by both the public and private sector employers. Other identified barriers we re: lack of required skills/training; supervisor knowledge of accommodation; supervisors‘ attitudes; and costs of accommodation, supervision, and training. The author concluded that there was still a lot to be done to decrease the unemployment rate for people

with disabilities. The recommendations provided by the researcher included that p eople with disabilities, educators, and employers need to improve education and training for persons with disabilities, provide more outreach from the employment community to recruit persons with disabilities, offer a better understanding of reasonable accommodation, and make an effort to overcome the attitudinal barrier. These needs were seen as fundamental to integrating people with disabilities into the workforce (Bruyere, 2000).

The Urban Institute used information from the Disability Supplement of the National Interview Survey to study barriers adults with disabilities face when finding a job. Sixteen thousand persons with disabilities were asked about their disability, their work, and their need for accommodations (Loprest & Maag, 2001). Of those who reported they could w ork, the reasons they could not find a job were: no appropriate jobs available, family responsibilities, lack of transportation, no information about jobs, inadequate training, fear of losing health insurance or Medicaid, and discouraged from working by family and friends.

Organizations might limit the hiring of people with disabilities because of several challenges they face in understanding definitions and legal implications of hiring workers

with disabilities. Associated with this is the fact that there is limited awareness,

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understanding, and communication between people with disabilities and people without disabilities (Bruyere, 2000; Groschl, 2007) . Groschl (2007) suggested that an improvement in manager education and enhanced communication between employees with disabilities and employees without disabilities might lead hotel managers to hire and integrate more of this sector of the population. Price, Gerber, and Mulligan (2007) conducted a review of literature on the use of the ADA by people with learning disabilities. The authors discussed several studies that showed people with learning disabilities were not using provisions of the ADA—specifically the use of self-disclosure (telling others about their disabilities)—because of their limited knowledge of the ADA. Because most (85%) people with learning disabilities go straight to work after school (Price et al.), the authors reviewed materials used for people with disabilities as part of their transition from high school to the workforce . They found limited or no information related to the ADA in these materials. The authors noted the ADA could be a good tool for people with learning disabilities during job searches, job performance evaluations, and job advancements. Schur (2002) conducted a study using two existing datasets. The researcher‘s purpose was to value the effect of employment on people with disabilities by comparing employment variables, such as economic, social, psychological, and political outcomes, between people with and those without disabilities. The sample included people of working age (18–64 years of age), 668 with disabilities and 924 without disabilities; the sample was stratified to oversample people with disabilities. Disability screening questions from the 2000 U.S. Census and the Harris Disability Questionnaire were used. Data were analyzed using comparisons between employment variables for people with and without disabilities. The author found that less than half (n = 307) of working-age people with disabilities were employed compared with 82% (n = 758) of working age people without disabilities. Employees with disabilities were more likely to work part time, and their hourly and annual incomes were lower than for people without disabilities. The author concluded that employment benefited people with disabilities by helping skill development, increasing income, decreasing social isolation, increasing life satisfaction, and increasing civic skills.

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Gilbride, Stensrud, Vandergoot, and Golden (2003) conducted a qualitative research study to identify characteristics of workplaces where employers are open to hiring and integrating people with disabilities into their organizations. To gather data, focus groups and interviews were conducted, tape recorded, and transcribed. Focus groups were used with people with disabilities who were currently employed to help identify employment experiences; employers‘ behaviors, policies and procedures; and other characteristics that helped them to be successful. Employers who had hired people with disabilities participated in focus groups and individual interviews to discuss their experiences with employees with disabilities. Employers included human resource directors from hospitals, manufacturing, and service industries; owners of small businesses; and mid-level supervisors of retail stores. Placement employers who had placed employees with disabilities also participated in focus groups and individual interviews to discuss methods used to place employees and perceptions of employers‘ characteristics. The results showed 13 workplace characteristics grouped into three categories: work cultural topics, job matches, and employer experience and support. Work cultural topics included characteristics related to diversity, work performance, and organizational policies; people with disabilities had to feel welcomed and supported in the workplace by management and coworkers. In the category of job match, the most important issue was the applicant‘s ability to perform essential job functions. Additional areas were: involving the person in the job, accommodations discussions, focusing on essential functions, and offering internships. The authors found that employers who had worked with people with disabilities in the past were more open to hiring and integrating them into the workforce (Gilbride et al., 2003). Vilá, Pallisera, and Fullana (2007) conducted a study in Spain to identify and analyze how factors related to family, work, and training influenced work integration of people with disabilities. The sample consisted of 32 professionals from 18 agencies who provided services for people with intellectual, physical, and mental disabilities. Semistructured group interviews were used for data collection. The interviews were structured using five themes: family, prior training of the worker, training by the supported employment service, workplace monitoring, and work setting of the person. The interviews lasted for 2½ hours

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and were recorded and transcribed. The data were analyzed using thematic content analysis techniques. The authors found that it was very important to clearly inform the family about the process of work integration and the work options of the person with a disability. Related to the work setting, the authors found that there was a need for more effort from the government to integrate workers with disabilities into the workforce. When monitoring the worker at the workplace, the authors highlighted the importance of the involvement of the job trainer and the supervisor at the work setting prior to training. Accommodations The ADA requires an employer to provide reasonable accommodation to qualified individuals with disabilities who are employees or applicants for employment; an exception can be made when such accommodation would cause an undue hardship (EEOC, 2002). The ADA defines three categories for reasonable accommodation: (i) modifications or adjustments to a job application process that enable a qualified applicant with a disability to be considered for the position such qualified applicant desires; or (ii) modifications or adjustments to the work environment, or to the manner or circumstances under which the position held or desired is customarily performed, that enable a qualified individual with a disability to perform the essential functions of that position; or (iii) modifications or adjustments that enable a covered entity's employee with a disability to enjoy equal benefits and privileges of employment as are enjoyed by its other similarly situated employees without disabilities (EEOC, 2002). The ADA describes a reasonable accommodation as any change or adjustment to a job, the work environment, or the way things usually are done that would allow a person to apply for a job, perform job functions, or enjoy equal access to benefits available to other individuals in the workplace. There are many types of accommodations that may help people with disabilities work successfully (USDJ, 1990). Some examples of reasonable accommodations include:  physical changes, such as installing a ramp or modifying a workspace or restroom;

Full document contains 131 pages
Abstract: People with disabilities are a viable segment of the population from which hospitality managers can hire employees. Once hired, hospitality managers must assure adequate training for all employees; training is an important human resource management function that can increase productivity in any organization. This study aimed to assess current training topics and methods used with employees with disabilities, as well as managers' knowledge and attitudes about people with disabilities, in hotels, restaurants, and school foodservice operations in the United States. Interviews and questionnaires were used for data collection. Questionnaire respondents gave a neutral response (mean rating 3.30 on a scale where 1 = strongly disagree to 5 = strongly agree) to knowledge questions about disability-related topics such as specific types of disabilities, training for specific types of disabilities, Americans with Disability Act (ADA), federal and state benefits of hiring people with disabilities, reasonable accommodations, legal issues, hiring process for disabled people, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's (EEOC) role. Topics with the highest mean ratings were: knowledgeable about ADA (3.68), physical disabilities (3.66), mental disabilities (3.52), and reasonable accommodation (3.46). The training methods most commonly used, as reported by questionnaire respondents, were on-the-job training (96%), demonstrations (78%), and self-guided training (53%). The training tools most commonly used were text and manuals (68%); audio/video tapes, DVDs, and CDs (53%); and computer programs (40%). The most commonly reported training topics for hotel and restaurant employees were cleaning procedures (93%), customer service (93%), equipment usage/cleaning (88%), knowledge of product (87%), and communication skills (85%). The most commonly reported training topics for school foodservice employees were food safety (99%), cleaning procedures (99%), equipment usage/cleaning (97%), handling of food (97%), and food preparation (96%). Attitudinal questions were analyzed for the two groups: commercial (hotels and restaurants) and noncommercial (school foodservices). In general, hotel and restaurant managers and school foodservice authorities had a neutral attitude toward employees with disabilities with means of 3.26 and 3.31, respectively. Factor analysis was conducted and correlations were calculated to ensure there was a significant correlation between the statements within each factor. For both groups, four factors with loadings higher than 0.400 were extracted. Factors were named based on the items included in each one of them. Factor 1 was named "Teamwork and Costs," factor 2 "Training," factor 3 was labeled "Characteristics," and factor 4 "Skills." Mean scores were computed for each of the four attitudinal factors. The mean score for Factor 4 (Skills) was the highest of the four factors for both groups. For the hotel and restaurant group, statistically significant differences (p ≤ .001) were found between mean scores for factor 1 (Teamwork and Costs) and ethnicity of participants (Caucasian or other ethnicity); Caucasians had a higher mean (3.23). Mean scores for Factor 4 (Skills) were statistically significant (p ≤ .05) based on age and number of years working for the current organization. Hotel and restaurant managers' ages and number of years working for their current organization had an effect on their attitudes toward employees with disabilities in relation to the importance of providing training on specific skills. For the school group, statistically significant differences (p ≤. 05) were found between mean scores for Factor 4 (Skills) and ethnicity of participants (Caucasian or other ethnicity); respondents from the non-Caucasian subgroup had the higher mean (4.18). This study provides information for hospitality industry managers about training methods and topics currently used. Managers' ages and years worked for the current organization had an effect on attitudes related to the importance of training people with disabilities. Ethnicity had an effect on attitudes related to teamwork. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)