Disability Compliance Office

Our Core Mission

  • Our Vision
  • Our Core Mission
  • Our Responsibilities
  • Our Program Goals
  • Contact

The office of Disability Compliance supports the campus in meeting its responsibilities with respect to persons with disabilities. The federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, as amended and other federal and state laws, as well as the University of California Guidelines Applying to Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability require that persons with disabilities have equal opportunity to enjoy campus programs, activities, and benefits.

  • Ensures that policies/procedures are in place to guide campus with respect to accommodating, and providing access to, faculty and students with disabilities.
  • Provides campus expertise in architectural access codes applicable to facilities, and manages buildings accessibility databases relevant to wheelchair users.
  • Oversees campus initiatives designed to ensure accessibility of printed materials and computer-based information.
  • Resolves allegations of disability discrimination and failure to accommodate with respect to students and community members.

Our Vision

The Disability Compliance Office (DCO) manages a robust compliance program that reframes legally-mandated disability-related physical and program access issues into self-regulatory good business practices that are based in universal design for the common good, rather than compliance and accomodation. The DCO collaboratively strives to maintain and promote an environment and culture of disability-related compliance, rooted in our campus mission of teaching, research, and public service consistent with the university Principles of Community, and the standing campus commitment to full inclusion.

Improving the equity and inclusiveness of the campus community for people with disabilities is an integral part of business operations and activities at every level of the university, and embraces the full spirit of diversity in the context of a shared commitment to excellence.

Our Core Mission

The DCO is the campus unit mandated to ensure activities, programs, services, information, and facilities at U.C. Berkeley are equally accessible to students, staff, faculty, and members of the community with disabilities in accordance with the Americans With Disabilities Act (A.D.A. – as amended), the 1973 Rehabilitation Act (as amended), the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), disability-related federal/state laws and regulations, and university policies and campus implementing procedures.

Our Responsibilities

The Disability Compliance Office advises units and departments regarding program and physical access issues, serves as the primary point of contact for disability-related complaints, maintains oversite of the implementation and impact of disability-related programs/projects and policies, monitors campus practices to ensure compliance with university policy, conducts investigations to ensure no person is subjected to discrimination on the basis of disability, and provides campus with disability-related education and training.

Our Program Goals

Complaint Resolution

  • The DCO complaint resolution goals are to direct, organize, and administer the campus response to disability-related allegations of discrimination filed by students, staff, faculty, and members of the community at the lowest level through early resolution efforts. 
  • When necessary, the DCO Conducts good-faith, neutral, fair, timely, and objective fact-finding discrimination investigations and recommends interim actions.  
  • The DCO conducts internal inquiries and investigations in response to disability-related complaints or concerns that represent legitimate compliance risks to the university in collaboration with Disability Management Services, Central Human Resources, Disabled Students Program, Office of General Counsel, campus counsel, and departments/units. 
  • The DCO ensures the university is responsive to incidents, patterns, or trends identified by campus partners, peer units (e.g., Whistleblower, Title IX, Public Records, Privacy Office, Risk Management, Human Resources, Audit and advisory Services) as well as those identified by community members, community organizations and/or agencies, and those due to regulatory inquiries or federal/state complaints or litigation. 

The primary goals are as follows:

  1. Ensure the university provides timely, effective, and reasonable accommodations for students, staff, and faculty.

  2. Ensure the university follows university procedures and policies regarding the appropriate implementation of accommodations for disability.

  3. Ensure the university follows university procedures and policies regarding the appropriate management of allegations of discrimination on the basis of disability through early-resolution, conflict resolution, mediation, and investigation.

Physical And Program access

The DCO implements comprehensive long term programs to upgrade facilities and outdoor paths of travel on the core campus. 

The DCO directs, organizes, and administers the campus response to existing physical facilities that may not conform to the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design  and/or Title 24 of the California Code of Regulations (Title 24).

In addition, the DCO ensures that the campus meets its obligations arising under court orders and settlements with respect to disability access to physical facilities and paths of travel. 

Finally, the DCO also has stewardship of campus data on the physical accessibility of building interiors and paths of travel and proposes access solutions to existing facilities and paths of travel when necessary.


Contact Disability Compliance Officer, Derek Coates,  at esc@berkeley.edu or (510) 643-8996.

Disability Access/Accommodation Complaints

Disability Compliance Office