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PRESS RELEASE
6-3-10

EEOC Sues Haven Manor For Refusing To Accept Hearing-Impaired Certified Nursing Assistant

Lincoln Assisted Living Facility Violated Federal Law, Agency Charged

LINCOLN, Neb. – Haven Manor, Inc. violated the Americans with  Disabilities Act (ADA) when it refused to accept temporary placement of Amanda  Huff, a hearing-impaired certified nursing assistant (CNA), at its assisted living  facility in Lincoln, Neb., the U.S. Equal Employment Oppor­tunity Commission  (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit filed today.

In its lawsuit (Case No. 4:10-cv-03108), filed in U.S.  District Court in Lincoln, the EEOC claimed that in September 2007, Willingham  Health Services, a staffing agency, sent Amanda Huff to Haven Manor in response  for a request for a CNA to cover short-staffing on the evening shift. The EEOC further alleges that after Huff, an  excellent lip reader, spent about 20 minutes in orientation with a Haven Manor  representative, she asked if she could have someone set her pager to vibrate  rather than produce an audible alert. It  was at this time that representatives of Haven Manor discovered that Huff is  hearing-impaired. A Haven Manor  representative informed Huff that she could not work the scheduled shift  because of her hearing impairment and sent her away.

Such alleged conduct violates the ADA, which prohibits employment  discrimination based on a disability. Huff  filed a discrimination charge, which the Nebraska Equal Opportunity Commission  (NEOC) investigated. The EEOC filed suit  only after both the NEOC and EEOC attempted to reach a voluntary settlement  with Haven Manor.

“Americans with disabilities overcome innumerable  obstacles throughout their lives in order to be able to compete on equal  footing with people who are not disabled,” said EEOC attorney Melvin Kennedy. “The ADA  and the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 were enacted to prevent employers from  denying employees with disabilities the equal opportunity to compete for jobs,  promotions and other benefits of employment.”

James  R. Neely, Jr., the EEOC’s St. Louis district director,  added, “By now, all employers should be aware of their obligations under the ADA. The EEOC will vigorously enforce the ADA and bring to justice  those employers who will not follow the law.”

The  EEOC is responsible for enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment  discrimination. Further information  about the Commission is available on the agency’s web site at www.eeoc.gov.