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Texas disability department accused of disability discrimination

The Texas Department of Aging and Disability has been sued by a former employee for wrongful termination. She says that the fired her because of her hearing impairment, which is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Texas employment law.

The conflict began when the woman was hired to work an assisted living facility during the day shift back in April of this year. She was unable to complete her originally scheduled training because an interpreter was not available at that time, so the department postponed it. Later she was reassigned to work during the night shift and made several requests to be returned to the day shift that she had been originally hired for, but those requests were denied.

The woman filed a complaint of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and was terminated two weeks later. The department said that she was fired because she was not suited to her assigned position.

If the allegations are true, this is a shocking case of disability discrimination from a Texas governmental entity that is supposed to serve the disabled population in this state. No employee deserves unfair treatment and federal law prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability status.

She is asking for damages in the form of past and future lost wages and benefits and for the emotional harm she has suffered as a result of this treatment. She is also asking for some other compensatory damages and attorney's fees to help put her back to where she would be financially had she not been wrongfully terminated.

Source: The Southeast Texas Record, "Texas Dept. of Aging and Disability sued for discriminating against deaf employee," Michelle Keahey, July 17, 2012

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