According to a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice, a decision was reached in the lawsuit against the University concerning the Americans with Disabilities Act Wednesday.

If approved by the court, the decision requires the University to pay two employees a total of approximately $215,000 for monetary and compensatory damages. The settlement also requires the University to revise its current policy on reassignments and transfers, provide training to staff on Title I of the ADA, and file reports with the department.

The agreement resolves previous allegations that the University failed to reassign another position to a maintenance employee who could no longer be on the maintenance staff due to a degenerative back disease.

The Justice Department said the University failed to offer two employees with disabilities reassignment to positions that were vacant. Instead, the University required the employees to compete against others for positions their disabilities allowed them to fill.

Title 1 of the ADA prohibits employers from discriminating against disabled employees, including failing to accommodate and reassign positions.

“It is contrary to the letter and the spirit of the ADA to require disabled employees who need a reassignment as a reasonable accommodation to compete for that assignment,” said Vanita Gupta, head of the Civil Rights Division and principal deputy assistant attorney. “As we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the ADA, we recognize its critical impact in the American workplace breaking down barriers for individuals with disabilities. We commend the University for working cooperatively with the department to promptly resolve this matter and affect necessary changes.”

In an email to the Daily, the University’s Office of Public Affairs said the University would revise its current policy in compliance with the settlement.

“U-M does not discriminate on the basis of disability and works to remove barriers that could prevent individuals with disabilities from enjoying the same opportunities as others. To better protect individuals with disabilities and ensure compliance with the ADA, U-M is revising its policy (SPG 201.84) on employees with disabilities. The University supports efforts that help ensure inclusivity for faculty and staff members.”

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