4-14: Fitness for Duty – Policy

Policy Overview

Santa Fe Community College (SFCC or College) is committed to providing a safe campus for its students, employees and visitors. In support of this commitment, the College strives to maintain a safe work environment for all employees.

Scope and Applicability

This policy outlines the requirements for fitness for duty and applies to all employees , regardless of classification or full- or part-time status.

Policy Statement

The College expects all employees to be fit for duty while in active work status and capable of performing their jobs alertly and safely.


  1. Employee is any member of the college workforce: all staff (regular full-time, regular part-time, term, temporary, probationary, sensitive position); all student employees; all faculty (full-time, part-time, adjunct, probationary); all administrators, including interim; all contract employees.
  2. Employee – Full Time Scheduled to work an average of 30 or more hours per week.
  3. Employee – Part-Time One who is regularly scheduled to work less than 30 hours per week, regularly.
  4. Fitness for Duty Employees are fully able to work their positions whenever they are in active work status. They must be able to complete their job tasks safely and alertly.
  5. Reasonable Accommodation Accommodation is modification to the work environment or responsibilities to enable a qualified employee with a disability or impairment to perform the essential functions of a specific position. Reasonable accommodation should not impose an undue hardship on College operations or create a direct threat to the health or safety of the employee or others. The determination of reasonable accommodation should be made after an interactive process between the employee and the College. Reasonable accommodation may include, but is not limited to: a. Making existing facilities used by employees readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities; b. Job restructuring; part-time or modified work schedules; reassignment to a vacant position; acquisition or modifications of equipment or devices; appropriate adjustment or modifications of examinations, training materials, or policies; the provision of qualified readers or interpreters; and other similar accommodation for individuals with disabilities.

Policy Process

A. Employee Responsibilities

  1. College employees are responsible for ensuring that they are capable of performing their job duties safely and effectively.
  2. An employee who is ill or injured should report any illness or injury that impacts their work performance to their supervisor and to make arrangements for sick leave or work adjustments. The employee need not disclose the underlying nature of the illness or injury, but must be prepared to discuss possible adjustments to affected job duties or to explain the probable duration of sick leave so that the supervisor can coordinate appropriate adjustments.
  3. If the employee is unable to work for medical reasons, they may apply for Family Medical Leave (SFCC Policy 4-15 Family Medical Leave).

B. Supervisor Responsibilities

  1. If a supervisor observes an employee who appears unfit to perform their assigned responsibilities, the supervisor must take appropriate steps to ensure that the safety of the employee and of others in the workplace is not jeopardized. This may include addressing the concern directly with the employee and coordinating with the Office of Human Resources if removing the employee from the workplace is required.
  2. The College has the right to require medical certification as a condition for continuing or returning to the job assignment.
  3. When feasible, the supervisor is also responsible for coordinating reasonable modifications to the employee’s job assignments to enable the employee to perform their work pending resolution of the medical concern.
  4. All workplace accommodation requests must be approved by the Office of Human Resources.

C. Medical Verification

  1. If a supervisor observes a pattern indicating possible abuse of sick leave, the supervisor may direct the employee to provide verification from a licensed healthcare provider that the sick leave is appropriate and justified.
  2. If an employee has been removed from the workplace as a result of fitness-for-duty concerns, the College will require the employee to provide medical verification that they are fit to return to work before approving a return to work status. The supervisor shall work with the Office of Human Resources in such cases.

D. Abuse Of Sick Leave

An employee who is found to have claimed sick leave without appropriate medical justification may be subject to corrective action or disciplinary action, up to and including termination (SFCC Policy 4-2 Employee Corrective Action and Disciplinary Action).

Statement of Accountability and Responsibility

The President, through the Vice President for Strategy and Organizational Effectiveness, the Director of Human Resources and the Office of Human Resources, shall be responsible for enforcing Human Resources procedures and policies. The Office of Human Resources shall work with the different departments and offices to comply with this policy and to develop procedures that will enforce this policy regarding awareness, prevention, and remediation.


SFCC Policy 4-2 Employee Corrective Action and Disciplinary Action
SFCC Policy 4-15 Family Medical Leave

SFCC Governing Board approved: 9/28/2006
Revised and Governing Board approved: 1/20/2015