EEOC Sues Broadleaf and Conduent for Disability Discrimination | United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
Business service provider and staffing agency failed to onboard customer service representative and fired her due to hearing impairment and federal agency fees
NEW YORK – Conduent State and Local Solutions, Inc., a business service provider that operates the New York E-ZPass toll system, and Broadleaf Results, an employment agency, violated federal law when they failed to failed to accommodate a customer service representative’s disability. then fired her, the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit filed today.
According to the EEOC lawsuit, the employee was placed by Broadleaf to work as a customer service representative at Conduent’s E-ZPass customer service center in Staten Island, NY The employee informed the Broadleaf and Conduent supervisors that she was having difficulty hearing customer calls and requested accommodation for her hearing loss. Although she was told that her disability could be accommodated, none of the employers undertook the necessary process to identify a suitable accommodation for her disability. The employee requested a meeting with management to discuss the status of her accommodation request. However, Broadleaf management told the employee, “If you can’t hear, then you can’t do the job,” and he was fired, effective immediately. Following the employee’s termination, Conduent made no effort to determine whether such termination was appropriate.
Such alleged conduct violates the American with Disabilities Act (ADA), which requires employers to undertake with applicants and employees to provide reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities and prohibits employers from taking adverse action against employees. qualified because of their disability. The EEOC filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York (EEOC v. Broadleaf Results, Inc. and Conduent State and Local Solutions, Inc. Civil Action No. 1: 22-cv-4557) after having attempted for the first time to join pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process. The EEOC seeks a remedy aimed at remedying and preventing discrimination based on disability. The case will be argued by EEOC Trial Attorney Edumin Corrales and EEOC Trial Attorney Kimberly Cruz.
“The law requires employers, whether a staffing agency or a client employer, to engage with employees to provide reasonable accommodations to people with disabilities and prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability” said Jeffrey Burstein, regional attorney for the EEOC’s New York District Office. “In this case, neither employer actually engaged in the interactive process, but rather terminated the employee – a clear violation of federal law.”
Timothy Riera, Acting Director of the New York District Office, said, “It is essential that staffing agencies and their client employers understand that the ADA imposes distinct obligations on each employer to engage in the interactive process. and to prevent discrimination against employees.
EEOC trial attorney Edumin Corrales added, “ADA compliance should not result in finger pointing among responsible employers. Instead, employers should work together to accommodate employees with disabilities and prevent discrimination for the benefit of all parties.
For more information on disability discrimination, see Disability Discrimination | United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (eeoc.gov)
The New York District Office of the EEOC is responsible for handling charges of discrimination, administrative enforcement, and the conduct of agency litigation in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York , northern New Jersey, Rhode Island and Vermont.
The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting discrimination in employment. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov.