Disability complaint settled for $35,000

The Maui News

A discrimination complaint involving an alleged denial of reasonable accommodation for an employee with a disability was settled for $35,000 in July, according to a settlement agreement obtained by The Maui News.

Previously, the amount of the settlement and other details were kept confidential. The only information released publicly in late August was through a “mutually agreed upon press release.”

The case was a settlement between Maui County and the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission.

The more recently released settlement agreement redacts the name of the employee. There’s no mention of her position or the county department in which she was employed.

According to an announcement in August, the case involved a longtime county employee who claimed she was denied a reasonable accommodation in the workplace.

“The employee’s doctor requested the elimination or reassignment of a job function, and the requested accommodation was initially granted to the employee,” the announcement says. Later, the request for an accommodation was denied.

The case was settled after a commission finding of reasonable cause but before a final decision was issued by the commission.

Maui County admitted no wrongdoing.

The “no-fault settlement” provides that the commission will review Maui County’s nondiscrimination policy and make any necessary revisions. Also, county employees, supervisors and managers will be required to participate in at least two hours of nondiscrimination training, “with a specific focus on disability discrimination.”

Under Hawaii law, an employee with a disability may request a reasonable accommodation, which is an adjustment or change needed to allow the employee to perform essential job functions.

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