Muncie Store Failed to Accommodate and Then Demoted Employee Because of His Dyslexia, Federal Agency Charged
INDIANAPOLIS - Dolgencorp, LLC, d/b/a Dollar General Store in Muncie, will pay $47,500 and furnish other relief to settle a disability discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.
According to the EEOC's lawsuit, Dollar General failed to provide a reasonable accommodation for an employee's disability and demoted him because of his disability, dyslexia. Specifically, the employee was required to take a series of computer based training followed by a written test. The employee asked for help reading the test due to his dyslexia. His request was denied. He was told he could not have any assistance, and that if he did not complete the training and take the test he would be demoted. When he refused to do so without accommodation, he was demoted to a lesser-paid position with reduced hours.
Such alleged conduct violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The EEOC filed suit, EEOC v. Dolgencorp, LLC, d/b/a Dollar General Store, Civil Action No. 1:11-cv-00755-SEB-DKL, in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, after first attempting to reach a voluntary pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.
The company agreed to pay the employee $47,500. Pursuant to the terms of the consent decree settling the suit, of this amount, $40 was designated as back-pay damages. The remaining amount of $47,460 was designated as compensatory damages. Dollar General also agreed to provide training to all of its store managers in the district explaining the requirements of the ADA and the interactive accommodation process; to post a notice informing employees that federal law prohibits discrimination; and to report to the EEOC over a two-year period how it has responded to all requests for reasonable accommodations.
"In this case, the employee wanted to work and performed well," said Laurie A. Young, regional attorney of the EEOC's Indianapolis District Office. "Dollar General however, did not engage in the interactive accommodation process with him. We are satisfied, based on the settlement, that the public interest has been served. We are confident that the injunctive relief obtained will prevent the recurrence of this type of situation."
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at www.eeoc.gov. The Indianapolis District Office oversees Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky and parts of Ohio.