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PRESS RELEASE
7-10-12

RCC Consultants Will Pay $45,000 to Settle EEOC Disability Discrimination Lawsuit

Company Revoked Conditional Job Offer After  Discovering Candidate Had Vision Problems, Federal Agency Charged

RICHMOND, Va.  – RCC Consultants, Inc., a New Jersey-based telecommunications engineering and  consulting company that has offices throughout the United States, has agreed to  pay $45,000 and furnish other significant relief to settle a disability lawsuit  filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency  announced today.

According  to the EEOC’s suit, RCC Consultants failed to hire Stanton Woodcock for a  managing consultant position because of his disability, ocular albinism.  Ocular albinism is an inherited condition in  which the eyes lack melanin pigment.   Because of the lack of melanin pigment in his eyes, Woodcock has a  variety of vision problems which substantially limit his ability to see. 

The  EEOC alleged that around Oct. 17, 2007, Woodcock interviewed for a managing  consultant position at RCC Consultant’s Glen Allen, Va., facility and was  offered the position.  However, later in  that month, when RCC Consultants learned that Woodcock does not drive because  of his disability, the company rescinded the job offer.  Although Woodcock was fully qualified to  perform the duties of the managing consultant position, RCC Consultants  unlawfully refused to hire him because of his disability, the EEOC charged.

Title  I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits private employers from  discriminating against qualified individuals with disabilities in employment.  The EEOC filed suit (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. RCC  Consultants, Inc. Civil Action No. 3:11-cv-864 in U.S. District Court for  the Eastern District of Virginia, Richmond Division) after first attempting to  reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process. 

Pursuant  to the two-year consent decree resolving the litigation, RCC Consultants agreed  to pay $45,000 in monetary relief to Woodcock.   In addition, the company must also take other actions set forth in the  consent decree, including redistributing the company’s anti-discrimination  policy to each of its current employees; posting its anti-discrimination policy  in its facilities; providing annual ADA-specific training to its officers,  managers, supervisors and any employee authorized to hire new employees; and  posting a notice about the settlement.   Further, RCC Consultants is enjoined from engaging in any further  discrimination against any person on the basis of disability, and has agreed to  be monitored by the EEOC for the decree’s term.

“Employers need to remember that a person who  can perform the job he or she seeks cannot be denied hire simply because of a  disability,” said Lynette A. Barnes, regional attorney for the EEOC’s Charlotte  District Office, whose jurisdiction includes Virginia.  “This resolution should serve as a reminder  that the EEOC will continue its efforts to ensure that employers make employment  decisions based on abilities and qualifications – not stereotypes or  assumptions.” 

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