ADA in the News: March 6, 2017

Settlement Agreement: Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections

EEOC Sues CRST for Disability Discrimination and Retaliation

CRST Expedited Inc., a national trucking company, violated federal law when it failed to accommodate, refused to hire and retaliated against a job candidate because he used a service dog, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a disability discrimination lawsuit it filed on March 2, 2017.

According to the EEOC's lawsuit, Leon Laferriere applied for a truck driver position with CRST in Fort Myers and signed up for the drivers' certification course with CRST's partner training company. After being admitted to the truck driver training program, but prior to leaving for to begin it, Laferriere disclosed his disabilities and use of a trained service dog. Laferriere is a veteran who uses a trained service dog to help control anxiety and to wake him from nightmares caused by post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Laferriere successfully completed the training program, but was denied advancement to orientation and additional on-the-road training. CRST told Laferriere that he could not advance to the on-the-road program, which requires overnights away from home, due to CRST's "no pet" policy. Laferriere was subsequently denied hire.

Cushman & Wakefield will Pay $100,000 to Settle EEOC Disability Discrimination Lawsuit

Commercial Real Estate Services Company Cushman & Wakefield will pay $100,000 and furnish significant relief to resolve a federal disability discrimination lawsuit, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit it announced Friday.

According to the suit, Toi Patterson worked for Cushman & Wakefield at its Columbia, Md., facility for nine years, first as an administrative assistant, and after a promotion, as a senior administrator, when she requested medical leave for her breast cancer treatment pursuant to the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). While on FMLA leave, Patterson requested, as a reasonable accommodation, to return to work on a part-time basis while she underwent treatment and advised that she might need additional unpaid leave after her surgery. The EEOC charged that Cushman & Wakefield fired Patterson because of her disability instead of allowing her to work part-time or providing another reasonable accommodation that would have allowed her to remain employed.

The Northwest Florida Daily News: EDITORIAL: Focus the ADA where it's needed

Before the Americans with Disabilities Act was passed, many Floridians struggled to survive in a world of barriers, like curbs and stairs impassible to wheelchair users or menus that a blind person couldn't see. And passage of the law has opened doors for millions of people shut out of activities that most Americans take for granted — things as crucial as holding a job, or as simple as looking in a mirror.

ADA lawsuits continue to hammer Valley's shops and restaurants

Merced Sun-Star

The art of mass producing disability-access lawsuits in Merced and Stanislaus counties and beyond continues to thrive despite multiple media reports and legislative reform stretching for more than two years.

Reasons? Proposed laws didn’t have enough teeth. Many owners still have not made their businesses wheelchair-friendly. And sue-happy serial litigants continue making money, in the name of making things more fair for the disabled.

“There is too much money to be made” from suing, said Sacramento attorney Rick Morin, who specializes in defending small businesses from such lawsuits. “They’re not going to stop suing.”

The issue came to light when The Modesto Bee reported that the owners of Ripon’s Barnwood Restaurant, highly visible from Highway 99, closed rather than fight a lawsuit claiming violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act in summer 2014. At that point, plaintiff Cynthia Hopson had brought 25 ADA lawsuits.

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