September 21, 2021 – The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) Office of Federal Operations (OFO) upheld a decision by an Administrative Judge, awarding $85,000 in compensatory damages, plus payment of full attorneys’ fees to a federal employee client of Kator, Parks, Weiser & Harris, PLLC, who complained of disability discrimination and failure to accommodate under the Rehabilitation Act. The responding Agency was an office of the EEOC itself, which was found to have not provided a reasonable accommodation to an employee who was a qualified individual with a disability, and by removing that employee from their position. The EEOC found, among other things, that because of the failure to accommodate, the employee’s alleged performance problems thereafter were not a valid reason to terminate her federal employment, as the Agency did. The decision required the Agency office retroactively reinstate the employee with backpay and interest, to pay compensatory damages, to restore leave, and to pay attorneys’ fees and costs. The office was also required to post public notice of the decision and provide training to the responsible management officials and consider taking disciplinary actions against those officials.
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