EEOC Sues Scottsdale Healthcare Hospitals / Honorhealth for Disability Discrimination

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
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U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)

Medical Provider Failed to Provide Reasonable Accommodations to Employees, Federal Agency Charges
 

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Scottsdale Healthcare Hospitals, doing business as HonorHealth, which provides medical care at a number of hospitals and medical facilities in the Phoenix area, failed to provide reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission charged in a lawsuit filed on Tuesday. The EEOC also alleged that HonorHealth fired employees or forced them to quit because of their disabilities or because they needed accommo­dations.

According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, employees with disabilities were repeatedly denied reasonable accommodations, including assistive devices, modified work schedules, and reassignment. Instead of engaging in the required interactive process or discussing possible accommodations, or providing them, HonorHealth forced the employees out of their jobs, the EEOC charged.

Such alleged conduct violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities. The EEOC filed suit in U.S. for the District of Arizona (EEOC v. Scottsdale Healthcare Hospitals d/b/a HonorHealth, Civil Action No. 2:20-cv-01899-MTL) after first attempting to reach a settlement through its pre-litigation conciliation process. The lawsuit seeks lost wages and compensatory and punitive damages, as well as appropriate injunctive relief to prevent discriminatory practices in the future.

“Individuals with disabilities are a vital part of the workforce,” said Mary Jo O’Neill, regional attorney of the EEOC’s Phoenix District Office. “When they request reasonable accommodations that would allow them to perform the essential functions of their jobs, the ADA re­quires employers to engage in an interactive process with those employees and provide a reasonable accommodation.”

Elizabeth Cadle, district director of the EEOC’s Phoenix District Office, added, “Too often, we see employers fall short of their obligations under the ADA. We encourage all employers to develop policies and practices that ensure their workplaces are free from disability discrimination.”

EEOC’s Phoenix District Office has jurisdiction for Arizona, Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, and part of New Mexico (including Albuquerque).

EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employ­ment discrimination. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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