Two companies pay $178K to settle disability, retaliation suits; another suit filed
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Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Two companies pay $178K to settle disability, retaliation suits; another suit filed

By Lauren Bikoff, MLS

A hospital allegedly violated the ADA, a senior care provider purportedly ran afoul of Title VII, and a home improvement store is facing sexual harassment allegations.

Two unrelated companies in California and New Mexico will pay a combined $178,000 to settle allegations of disability discrimination and retaliation. In addition, the EEOC has filed a suit against Menard, Inc., in Michigan, alleging sexual harassment.

Disability discrimination suit settled. St. Vincent Hospital, dba Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico, will pay $98,000 and furnish other relief to settle a disability discrimination and retaliation lawsuit. According to the EEOC’s suit, St. Vincent Hospital violated the ADA when it subjected a deaf employee to a hostile work environment, failed to provide her with reasonable accommodations, and then fired her because of her request for reasonable accommodations and her complaints about her supervisor’s conduct.

In addition to the monetary relief, the hospital is prohibited from engaging in disability discrimination and retaliation in the future and must revise its EEO and reasonable accommodation policies. St. Vincent Hospital will provide annual training to employees on disability discrimination and report to the EEOC any complaints of disability discrimination.

The EEOC filed its lawsuit in the District of New Mexico; the case is No. 1:19-cv-00764-KWR-GBW.

Retaliation suit resolved. Brookdale Senior Living Communities, Inc., a nationwide senior care provider, has agreed to pay $80,000 to settle a retaliation lawsuit. The EEOC’s suit alleged that an African American caregiver working at Brookdale’s Auburn, California, facility overheard coworkers use a phrase with racial connotations offensive to the caregiver. Soon after the caregiver complained about the comments and alleged discrimination, Brookdale suspended and ultimately fired her, violating Title VII.

The settlement requires Brookdale to train its personnel on compliance with federal anti-discrimination laws, with an emphasis on retaliation under Title VII. The company also will implement anti-retaliation policies and post a notice describing employee rights under Title VII.

The EEOC brought its lawsuit in the Eastern District of California; the case is No. 2:20-cv-00993-TLN-AC.

Sexual harassment suit filed. Menard, Inc., which operates over 300 Menards home improvement stores in 14 states, violated Title VII by subjecting female employees to sexual harassment at its Wixom, Michigan, location, according to a suit recently filed by the EEOC. Over a period of three years, at least three different female employees received pornographic messages and other forms of sexual harassment from an assistant manager, the federal agency contends. After being told of the harassment, the department manager allegedly failed to investigate the assistant manager from the employees. The assistant manager was finally investigated after the third compliant, and he was terminated after he admitted to the harassment.

The EEOC filed its lawsuit in the Eastern District of Michigan; the case is No. 2:20-cv-11240.

Companies: St. Vincent Hospital; Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center; Brookdale Senior Living Communities, Inc.; Menard, Inc.

News: AgencyNews Discrimination Discharge DisabilityDiscrimination SexualHarassment Retaliation GCNNews

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