Cessna Aircraft will pay $167,500 to settle a lawsuit filed last fall by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission over allegations of disability discrimination.
The EEOC said in a news release the subsidiary of Textron Aviation violated the Americans with Disabilities Act when it rescinded or withdrew job offers to two conditional employees who had a temporary disability or a history of workers’ compensation restrictions despite having medical documentation that they could work for the company without restriction.
“The violations were found in Milwaukee and Wichita based on what appeared to be a company-wide policy,” the EEOC said in the release.
A consent decree that settled the lawsuit and was signed by Judge Lynn Adelman of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin required Cessna to pay the monetary settlement to the two, former conditional employees, EEOC said in the release.
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Cessna must also institute several measures as part of the settlement, including creating a new ADA policy, reporting to the EEOC for two years and training its human resources and health services employees on disability discrimination, reasonable accommodation and retaliation under ADA, EEOC said in the release.
“Although we have always challenged the EEOC’s pursuit of this case given the underlying facts, we understand that many processes have room for improvement,” Textron Aviation spokeswoman Rosa Lee Argotsinger said in a statement e-mailed to The Eagle on Monday. “The company is receptive to adopting new standards for placing employees in a manner that effectively balances safety concerns with our commitment to working with individuals with medical impairments and disabilities.”
“Despite the EEOC’s allegations, Cessna has always and will continue to work closely with applicants and employees in attempting to find placements in line with restrictions, including the successful placement of one of the applicants named in the EEOC case prior to the suit being filed,” Argotsinger said in the statement.