Minneapolis-based retail giant Target will pay $160,000 to settle a disability discrimination suit at one of its California stores.
The EEOC filed the suit on behalf of Jeremy Schott, who suffers from cerebral palsy.
Schott’s condition requires him to have a job coach to remind him to perform scheduled tasks and provide assistance during training and at meetings. Schott began as a stock clerk and later asked to be transferred to a cart attendant position. With the aid of a job coach, he performed well enough to be named “Target Hero of the Month” in 2003.
But things apparently changed dramatically after Schott took a leave of absence following a seizure he suffered in 2004. When he returned, Target cut his hours to as few as eight per week and didn’t always provide the job coach Schott needed.
Schott filed a complaint with the EEOC, alleging Target violated the ADA by reducing his hours and failing to accommodate him by providing a coach. The EEOC tried to mediate the dispute, but when those efforts failed, it filed suit in federal court. That’s when the parties successfully worked out a settlement.
The settlement includes a three-year consent decree requiring Target to designate an ADA coordinator in its corporate-level HR function and implement a companywide policy regarding requests for reasonable accommodations. The company also agreed to train executives and managers on how to handle requests for reasonable accommodations. Target will also submit ADA compliance reports to the EEOC.