Disability Services Provider to Pay $130,000 to Settle Disability Discrimination Lawsuit Filed by EEOC on Behalf of Job Applicant, Training Ordered

Monday, November 4, 2013
Question:  Would disability discrimination training have prevented this case?  See our trainings at http://www.hrclassroom.com.

Solano County disability services provider Pace Solano agreed to pay $130,000 and implement preventative measures to settle a disability discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

According to the EEOC's lawsuit, Pace Solano withdrew its offer of an instructor position after Katrina Holly disclosed during the pre-employment physical exam that she has partial paralysis in her left hand.  Even though Holly successfully completed all tests and was cleared to do the job by Pace Solano's own occupational health provider, it refused to hire Holly because of her hand situation.   Holly had applied for the job at the encouragement of a Pace Solano employee who thought she would work well with their clientele, who are people with developmental disabilities. 

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits employers from refusing to hire employees based on a disability.  After first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through conciliation efforts, the EEOC filed the suit (EEOC v. Pace Solano, Civil Action No. CV 12-01823 MCE-DAD) in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California. 

Under the five-year consent decree settling the suit, signed by Judge Morrison C. England, Pace Solano will pay Holly $130,000. Also, the company will provide anti-discrimination training to HR and supervisory personnel; develop written policies on disability discrimination; post a notice regarding the terms of the decree; and make periodic reports to the EEOC regarding hiring and training.  

According to the organization's website at pacesolano.org, Pace Solano employs nearly 200 individuals and provides day programming and life skills training services to 380 clients with developmental disabilities. 
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