AccentCare Inc., a home healthcare company headquartered in Dallas, has agreed to pay $25,000 and provide other significant relief to settle a disability discrimination lawsuit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
In a lawsuit, the EEOC charged AccentCare with discriminating against an employee with bipolar disorder.
According to the EEOC’s suit, an AccentCare IT analyst informed the company that she has bipolar disorder and requested leave in order to see her healthcare provider. The EEOC further said that upon learning of the employee’s disability and receiving her request for leave, AccentCare fired her within one day, without giving proper consideration to her request.
Such alleged conduct violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which protects employees from discrimination based on their disabilities and requires employers to make reasonable accommodations to employees’ disabilities as long as it does not pose an undue hardship.
The EEOC sued in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas (Civil Action No. 3:15-cv-03157) after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.
Under the terms of the consent decree settling the case, AccentCare, Inc. will pay $25,000 in monetary relief to the former IT analyst.
AccentCare also agreed to post a notice about the settlement, and to provide training for employees on the ADA to include instruction on the specific provisions of the reasonable accommodation process. The training will include an instruction advising managers and supervisors of the potential consequences for violations of the ADA.
Additionally, AccentCare has agreed to document complaints of disability discrimination and report to the EEOC.
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