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Personal Assistance Services

What is Personal Assistance Services?

Personal Assistance Services (PAS) differ from medical services and services that are typically performed by someone who often has the job title of “personal assistant.” PAS are non-medical services that allow individuals with targeted disabilities to perform basic human activities of daily living such as eating, removing and putting on clothing, and using the restroom. PAS are not the same as services that help the individuals perform job-related tasks, such as filing, or using a computer.

What is Food Nutrition Service's (FNS) responsibility?

FNS is required to provide PAS to FNS employees with targeted disabilities who need assistance with basic activities of daily living such as eating, removing and putting on clothing, and using the restroom, unless doing so will impose an undue hardship on the Agency. These services are required by federal agencies as an aspect of affirmative action pursuant to 29 CFR § 1614.203(d) (5). These services are also required under Section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which prohibits discrimination based on disability, as long as the provision of such services does not impose an undue hardship.

What are the procedures for requesting PAS?

  1. An employee may request PAS the same way they request RA (using FNS form AD-1163, Confirmation of Reasonable Accommodation (RA) Request).
  2. The employee must indicate which types of basic human functions are to be assisted within the request.
  3. If the employee needs assistance with job-related tasks, he/she may submit a separate request for RA to address the essential functions of the job.
  4. The process for determining whether such services can be provided by FNS will follow the same protocol as on the regular RA requests. The employee may be asked to provide medical documentation, if necessary.

How will PAS be paid for?

Each program office will be responsible for funding each approved PAS request. FNS's reasonable accommodation program manager will assist employees and program offices to find the appropriate service contractors when the need arises.

For more information please contact the FNS reasonable accommodation coordinator's mailbox: FNS.HRD.ReasonableAccommodations@usda.gov.

Page updated: December 08, 2023