Disability News Service, Resources, Diversity, Americans with Disabilities Act; Local and National.

Friday, May 30, 2014

The Opinion Pages: Depressed, but Not Ashamed

as appeared in the 'Opinion' section of The New York Times

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — MOST of our closest friends didn’t know that we struggled with depression. It just wasn’t something we discussed with our high school classmates. We found that we both had taken Prozac only when one of us caught a glimpse of a prescription bottle in a suitcase during a journalism conference last November. For the first time, we openly discussed our feelings and our use of antidepressants with someone who could relate. We took a risk sharing our experiences with depression, but in our honesty, we found a support system. We knew we had to take the idea further.
In the United States, for people between the ages of 10 and 24, suicide is the third leading cause of death, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Untreated depression is one of the leading causes of suicide. According to the National Comorbidity Survey: Adolescent Supplement, 11 percent of adolescents have a depressive disorder by age 18.
We were not alone. We wondered why, with so many teenagers dealing with depression, it was still addressed in such impersonal ways.
As editors at our high school newspaper, we decided to fight against the stigma and proposed devoting a whole edition to personal stories from our peers who were suffering from mental illness. We wanted honesty with no anonymity.
We knew that discussing mental health in this way would be edgy, even for our progressive community in Michigan. But we were shocked when the school administration would not allow us to publish the articles.
With the help of other journalism students, we interviewed teenagers from around our school district who shared stories of depression, eating disorders, homelessness, prescription abuse, insomnia and anxiety. Many discussed their personal struggles for the first time. All agreed to attach their full name — no anonymity or pseudonyms. Following online recommendations of the Student Press Law Center, we asked the parents of each student to sign consent forms for the articles.
As we were putting the stories together, the head of our school called us into her office to tell us about a former college football player from our area who had struggled with depression and would be willing to let us interview him. We wondered why she was proposing this story to us since he wasn’t a current high school student. We declined her suggestion. We didn’t want to replace these deeply personal articles about our peers with a piece about someone removed from the students. After we asked her why she was suggesting this, she told us that she couldn’t support our moving forward with the articles.
From an administrative perspective, this made some sense. It is her job to protect the students to the best of her ability. She believed that the well-being of those who shared their experiences — and most important, their names — would be put at risk because of potential bullying. She also mentioned that she had consulted a mental health professional, who told her that reading about their own depression could trigger a recurrence in some of the students and that those who committed to telling their stories might regret it later.
Our school has a very tolerant atmosphere, and it even has a depression awareness group, so this response seemed uncharacteristic. We were surprised that the administration and the adults who advocated for mental health awareness were the ones standing in the way of it. By telling us that students could not talk openly about their struggles, they reinforced the very stigma we were trying to eliminate.
The feeling of being alone is closely linked to depression. This can be exacerbated if there is no one to reach out to. Though there are professionals to talk to, we feel it doesn’t compare to sharing your experiences with a peer who has faced similar struggles. And, most important to us, no one afflicted with a mental illness should have to believe that it’s something he should feel obliged to hide in the first place. If someone has an illness such as diabetes, she is not discouraged from speaking about it. Depression does not indicate mental weakness. It is a disorder, often a flaw of biology, not one of character.
By interviewing these teenagers for our newspaper, we tried — and failed — to start small in the fight against stigma. Unfortunately, we’ve learned this won’t be easy. It seems that those who are charged with advocating for our well-being aren’t ready yet to let us have an open and honest dialogue about depression.

Disabled Student In Wheelchair Beaten By School Security Guard In Oakland, Police Say (VIDEO)

 | By Ed Mazza

A special needs student in a wheelchair was allegedly beaten by a school security guard in California -- and much of the incident was caught on video.
"He slapped me. He hit me so hard, it threw me out of my chair. I hit the floor with my chin first. I had a scar right here," Oakland High School student Francisco Martinez told KTVU, pointing to his chin.
The security guard was identified as 23-year-old Marchell Mitchell.
The school said Mitchell, who was a substitute school resource officer, was urging students to get to class on time on May 19. Martinez, 17, who has cerebral palsy and is in a wheelchair, "either refused to comply or was slow to do so," Principal Matin Abdel-Qawi wrote in a letter to parents cited by the San Francisco Chronicle.
Mitchell then began to push Martinez's wheelchair. When Martinez objected and tried to slap the guard's hands away, Mitchell allegedly handcuffed the teen to the chair.
Martinez admits he then spit on the guard.
"I was handcuffed, so I didn't have no way to defend myself but my mouth," Martinez told KTVU.

That's when the alleged assault on the student began, and Martinez says there's more to it than what's seen on the video. Along with being attacked in the hallway, Martinez said he was beaten and thrown to the ground in an elevator.
He's been battling pain since the incident.
Mitchell was fired, arrested by Oakland police and charged with corporal injury to a child, a felony.
"I'm shocked and deeply hurt by this behavior and apologize on behalf of the staff at Oakland High," Abdel-Qawi wrote. "This incident is not reflective of the kind of culture we cherish at our school or how we treat one another."

Philadelphia Disability Advocates Outraged Over Wheelchair Accessible Taxis

Advocates Outraged Over Wheelchair Accessible Taxis

Dennis Weldon, PPA's general counsel, explains the regulation to a group of advocates following the monthly board meeting.
By Alison Burdo | NBC10 | May 29, 2014
The Philadelphia Parking Authority’s monthly board meeting Wednesday drew a heated crowd of advocates for people with disabilities after its final version of the latest taxi regulations indicated only 15 of the city’s new 150 cabs would be wheelchair accessible vehicles.
"If you think you are only going to give us 15 taxis, you are out of your mind," said Nancy Salandra, nonprofit Liberty Resources’ director of independent living services. "We are supposed to be a city of first class."
Salandra was one of a dozen people – many in wheelchairs -- who expressed their confusion and outrage over the documents the Authority submitted to the state’s Independent Regulatory Review Commission late last month.
The Authority plans to auction off 45 new taxicab medallions this year and another 15 each year between 2015 and 2022, upping the total number of medallions in the city to 1,750 from 1,600.  Initial reports indicated this year’s disbursement would only be issued for new, wheelchair accessible vehicles, which only constitute seven of the current fleet of cabs.
But one line in the PPA’s final rulemaking order -- "Only the first 15 authorized medallions are statutorily required to be wheelchair accessible vehicles (‘WAVs’)" – caused an uproar among the advocates, who accused the board members of negligence.
"What sort of vision do you have for the city? Do you want to have an inclusive equal access city with a fully accessible fleet?" asked Matthew Clark, a member of ADAPT, a national grassroots disability rights organization.
The PPA board members were quick to explain the group was overthinking the sentence and the plan was always to issue all 150 medallions to WAVs.
"It was never the intent to only have 15 WAV vehicles," said PPA Executive Director Vince Fenerty, who confessed a personal commitment to the cause during the hour-long meeting.
"When I was just out of high school, I was struck with transverse spinal myelitis," he said. One symptom of the neurological disorder is paralysis.
"I was in a wheelchair for four months," Fenerty said. "My mother had to take me to the doctor and hospital…and I had to slide across a Yellow Cab back seat. I know what it is like."
After the admission, Fenerty promised that all 150 medallions would be issued exclusively to WAVs.
"I give you my word," he said. "When I give my word that something is going to be done correctly, it will be done correctly."
But describing his little-known experience with paralysis and giving his personal guarantee was not enough to assuage the advocates in attendance. Many stayed after the meeting concluded to voice their concerns that wording in official documentation would override Fenerty’s "word."
"There is a large minority in the city that you don’t provide accessible taxis too," Salandra said.
PPA’s final rulemaking is scheduled to go before the Independent Regulatory Review commission on June 19. 

Disability Equality Index Survey to be Unveiled on June 26, 2014 - AAPD Press Release

as shared by The American Association of People with Disabilities ...

AAPD Press

Press Release: Disability Equality Index Survey to be Unveiled on June 26, 2014

For Immediate Release
May 29, 2014

Washington, DC (May 29, 2014) -- The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) and the US Business Leadership Network® (USBLN®) are excited to announce the public release of the first Annual Disability Equality IndexSM (DEISM). Created by leaders in the business and disability communities, the DEI is an online benchmarking tool that offers businesses the opportunity to receive an objective score, on a scale of zero to 100, on their disability inclusion policies and practices.
After the successful completion of the DEI pilot with 48 Fortune 1000 scope companies in March 2014, AAPD and the USBLN will be releasing the DEI survey questions publicly on June 26, 2014before opening up the first Annual DEI survey to Fortune 1000 scope companies for participation in October 2014. Those interested in attending the DEI survey public release call must register here by June 19, 2014http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/DEI_Release.

“The DEI is an aspirational, educational, recognition tool that is intended to help companies identify opportunities for continued improvement and help build a company’s reputation as an employer of choice,” said Mark Perriello, President and CEO of AAPD, the nation’s largest disability rights organization. “The DEI pilot was thorough and helped us create an even more meaningful tool for the business community and disability community.”
“We are confident the DEI is going to be a game changer for all companies who are interested in enhancing their disability inclusion efforts regardless of where they are at in their journey,” said Jill Houghton, Executive Director of the USBLN. “The DEI is also helpful for a company whether or not they are a Federal Contractor.”
Companies that take the DEI self-report on a wide-range of criteria within four categories: Culture & Leadership, Enterprise-Wide Access, Employment Practices, and Public Support & Engagement.
Companies that participated in the pilot DEI reported the following strengths:
  • “Comprehensive but not too challenging to complete” 
  • “Well-rounded; touches on more areas than just employment, such as customers and suppliers” 
  • “Questions are insightful and provide ideas for improvement” 
  • “Focuses on strategy and concrete programs / policies rather than data reporting”
Additionally, companies participating in the DEI pilot said:
  • “Allowed us to look at the big picture to see how far we’ve come” 
  • “Required us to engage multiple stakeholders across the company; enabled us to reaffirm our commitment to inclusion of people with disabilities during the discussions” 
  • “The areas of indication provided a good indication of current and future trends” 
  • “Helped us to set targets for improvement”
For more general information about the DEI, please visit: http://www.usbln.org/programs-dei.html.
About the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD)
The American Association of People with Disabilities is the nation's largest disability rights organization. AAPD promotes equal opportunity, economic power, independent living, and political participation for people with disabilities. AAPD’s members, including people with disabilities and family, friends, and supporters, represent a powerful force for change. To learn more, visit the AAPD Web site: www.aapd.com.

About the US Business Leadership Network® (USBLN®)
The US Business Leadership Network® (USBLN®) is a national non-profit that helps business drive performance by leveraging disability inclusion in the workplace, supply chain, and marketplace. The USBLN® serves as the collective voice of over 50 Business Leadership Network affiliates across the United States, representing over 5,000 businesses. Additionally, the USBLN® Disability Supplier Diversity Program® (DSDP) is the nation’s leading third party certification program for disability-owned businesses, including businesses owned by service-disabled veterans. www.usbln.org.

About AAPD
The American Association of People with Disabilities is the nation's largest disability rights organization. We promote equal opportunity, economic power, independent living, and political participation for people with disabilities. Our members, including people with disabilities and our family, friends, and supporters, represent a powerful force for change. To learn more, visit the AAPD Web site: www.aapd.com


Thursday, May 29, 2014

Illinois Legislature Passing Anti-Bullying Bill for Illinois school districts; on Gov Quinn's desk to be signed

PRESS RELEASE | May 29, 2014
State of Illinois 

Governor Quinn Statement on Senate Passage of Anti-Bullying Bill

SPRINGFIELD – Governor Pat Quinn today released the following statement regarding Illinois Senate passage of House Bill 5707, a bill that sets a comprehensive anti-bullying standard for Illinois school districts. The measure had previously passed the Illinois House, and now heads to the Governor’s desk:

“All Illinois students deserve to go to school where they feel welcome and safe.

“This legislation requires school districts to have policies in place to prevent bullying and thoroughly investigate when it happens. By requiring schools to shine a light on the problem and come up with solutions, we will make great strides to eliminate bullying from our classrooms.

“I applaud Representative Kelly Cassidy and Senator Heather Steans for sponsoring this legislation. I look forward to signing it and increasing safety and tolerance in our schools.”



Saturday, May 24, 2014

The Illinois Tollway Advance Customer Service Call Center is growing, and it's looking to add more people with disabilities and veterans to their workforce.

"We respond to as many as 10,000 customer inquiries every day either through phone or mail or email," said Kristi LaFleur, executive director of the Illinois Tollway.

"I-Pass is growing in popularity, 87 percent of our drivers now use I-Pass to drive on our roads, and that number increases every year, which is great for us," LaFleur said. "But it does present some challenges, because those customers need sometimes to call in and get information about their accounts, and this is where they do it."

Terry Longo is the COO for the Chicago Lighthouse, which currently has 300 employees.

"We're responsible for staffing - there are full and part time jobs here," Longo said. "Monday through Friday we operate for 16 hours a day from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., and on the weekends we operate from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m."

All employees have to go through a four to six week training program.

"The Chicago Lighthouse has really done a phenomenal job of making sure that we are getting a higher and higher percentage of people with disabilities and veterans working here at this facility, which was our goal," Longo said.

Megan Craig has been working as a call center agent for one year.

"I get to converse with people," Craig said. "I enjoy that and I also like the problem solving skills that I get to learn, so helping people resolve situations that would initially seem difficult."

"We've gotten tremendously positive customer feedback," LaFleur said. "The professionalism of the people working here and just their knowledge of the tollway is great."

If you are interested in learning more about employment opportunities with the Illinois Tollway Advanced Customer Service Call Center, visit www.chicagolighthouse.org


For more ABC7 Disability Issues, visit:

How Medicare Reform Mistakes Impact People with Spinal Cord Injury - online PETITION

By  on April 02, 2014 in Impact on Patient HealthSpinal Cord Injury

More than 450,000 people in the US are living with a spinal cord injury, and permanent paralysis.

Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) is defined as damage to the spinal cord resulting in a loss of function such as mobility or feeling. More than 10,000 people in the US experience a spinal cord injury every year, with the majority being men between the ages of 16-30. Quadriplegia is slightly more common [and more serious] than paraplegia in spinal cord injuries.
According to a study initiated by the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, worldwide nearly 1 in 50 people are living with paralysis — approximately 6 million people. That’s the same number of people as the combined populations of Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C.
This means that we all know someone — a brother, sister, friend, neighbor, or colleague — who is living with paralysis.

People who have Spinal Cord Injury often depend on a variety of medical equipment including catheters, continence care products, respiratory devices, braces, orthotic devices, wheelchairs, rolling walkers and other medical supplies.

That’s why it is so important for people who have Spinal Cord Injury to be able to get the medical supplies and equipment they need.  And, that’s also why Medicare reform mistakes are having such a life-altering impact on nearly one-half million Americans who have SCI.
Bert Burns is a C6-7 quadriplegic, Paralympic athlete and the founder of LASCI, a peer support program for people who are newly injured. Like Bert, nearly 1/2-million people with spinal cord injury across the US are being hurt by Medicare reform mistakes.

There are three major areas of concern related to Medicare reform mistakes and Spinal Cord Injury:

  1. Access to care & related medical supplies

  2. Quality of care delivered

  3. Choice in care options

Medicare reform mistakes have impacted the local availability and/or repair process for the following types of medical equipment that are commonly used by people who have Spinal Cord Injury.

CPAP Devices and Respiratory Assist Devices

Standard (Power & Manual) Wheelchairs, Scooters, and Related Accessories

Enteral Nutrients, Equipment and Supplies

Support Surfaces (Group 2 mattresses and overlays)

Hospital Beds (used in the home)

Walkers and Related Accessories

Negative Pressure Wound Therapy Pumps and Related Supplies

How Medicare Changed the Process of Wheelchair Repairs

Perhaps the most hurtful mistake made during the current Medicare reform process is one that limits the ability of people who use wheelchairs to get their mobility equipment delivered or repaired in a reasonable, timely fashion.
Since April 2013, a joint taskforce of consumers, clinicians, and providers has been monitoring problems with Medicare beneficiary access to power mobility device (PMD) repairs. These issues have been reported, multiple times, to Medicare/CMS.
Instead of fixing these problems, Medicare made access to mobility equipment like wheelchairs even more difficult by expanding the competitive bidding program and adding face-to-face regulations.

Medicare’s new face-to-face regulations are requiring people — who have been previously diagnosed with permanent paralysis — to go to the doctor to prove they still have SCI before they can purchase or repair their wheelchair.

Medicare has also redefined many wheelchair accessories and/or common mobility equipment as rental items rather than a purchased item. This means you could own your power chair, but be forced to rent the motor that powers it.
The complicated and contradictory rules associated with this Medicare reform mistake have made repairing mobility equipment and replacing parts nearly impossible.

How this Medicare reform mistake hurts people with Spinal Cord Injury:

EinstiegPeople who use wheelchairs depend on their mobility equipment for personal independence, physical fitness and the ability to take part in everyday life.  When Medicare reform mistakes keep people from being able to purchase or repair their wheelchairs, their physical health isn’t the only area of their life that is negatively impacted.
Without a working wheelchair, many people with spinal cord injury are confined to their house.  For someone like Bert, who is wheelchair-dependent, life comes to a standstill without it.  The social and mental toll this takes on an individual’s emotional health is extreme.

Imagine not being able to leave your house. Imagine not being able to get out of bed.

All because your health insurance provider, Medicare, has made it nearly impossible to get the mobility equipment you need. This Medicare reform mistake doesn’t help people in need. It hurts them – physically, emotionally and socially.

It's time to Speak Up!What Can You Do?

Please take 5 minutes to TAKE ACTION by sending an email through our quick and easy tool.

Your email will ask your Congressional representatives to help protect millions of Americans with severe disabilities by putting a stop to Medicare reform mistakes. We do all the legwork for you – all we need is for you to click the button!

So if you have Spinal Cord Injury, or love someone who does, don’t wait.


Google Maps: Help people with mobility challenges. Make your maps accessible! - PETITION online

from our colleague Randy McNeal ...
posted at Change.org 

 Google Maps: Help people with mobility challenges. Make your maps accessible!

Google Maps: Help people with mobility challenges. Make your maps accessible!

    2. Petition by
      Vaughan, Canada
Multiple sclerosis landed me in a wheelchair in 2006. Suddenly a too-narrow door, or one step outside of a restaurant turned the daily activities I had always taken for granted into huge obstacles. When most people plan to go to a restaurant they don't have to worry about whether they'll actually be able to get in the door to meet their friends, or whether they'll be able to get into a bathroom stall. Many of us just choose stay home rather than face these challenges - there's got to be a better way.
Google Maps has the ability to help people with disabilities across the world.Currently Google Maps has different options -- you can add traffic info, bike info or weather info to your maps. People with mobility challenges like me need Google Maps to include an accessibility option so that we are able to find out where we can go!  
No one wants to discriminate, but accessibility isn't something most people have to think about ever, thankfully. Most of the time I just need to point out why something is inaccessible for people in wheelchairs and people spring into action. I'm hoping that's the case with Google. After all, their motto is: don't be evil. 
Google already designs their products to be accessible for blind and deaf people, so we know they already care about accessibility. 
When I first lost the ability to walk, I felt invisible. I had been an industrial millwright mechanic for 30 years and suddenly couldn't do that anymore. But I decided to see my disability as a new challenge. I went back to college to study Community and Justice Services, and I developed a passion for helping others. 
I started this because I know that not only would an accessibility feature on Google Maps change the daily lives of people with disabilities around the world, but more importantly, it would be saying that people with accessibility challenges matter too. 
Sign my petition and spread the word!
Thanks, Randy McNeil

State of Illinois review prompting changes to Lyons Twp. HS students with disabilities program

By Wes Venteicher, Chicago Tribune reporter | May 28, 2014

Lyons Township High School District 204 officials are planning tweaks to the school's special education program after a state agency targeted the program for review.
The Illinois State Board of Education began a review of how the high school educates students with disabilities in January, after noticing that a relatively low percentage of students with disabilities at Lyons spent 80 percent or more of their time in class with nondisabled students for the 2012-2013 school year, Lyons Township High School Curriculum and Instruction Director Scott Eggerding said.
Students with disabilities often spend some of their time in general education classes and some of their time in classes with people who have similar disabilities. State guidelines direct schools to place students with disabilities in general education classrooms "to the maximum extent appropriate," according to an Illinois State Board of Education instruction document.
The agency sets targets for how much time students with disabilities should spend in general education classrooms and monitors how close schools come to the target. For the 2012-2013 school year, the state set a target that 52 percent of students with disabilities should spend 80 percent or more of their time in general education classrooms.
For the same year, about 28.2 percent of students with disabilities at Lyons spent 80 percent or more of their time in general education classrooms, according to district figures. On average in Illinois in the same year, 39.4 percent of students with disabilities spent that much time in general education classrooms, the figures show.
When the school identifies disabilities in a student — which can range from Down syndrome or autism to computational delays — a team of education professionals develops a specific education plan for the student, Eggerding said in an interview.
Lyons has developed the learning plans for 464 students. The Illinois State Board of Education reviewed 40 of the plans, selecting the students in a semi-random fashion that included students with several types of disabilities, Eggerding said. While state reviewers and Lyons officials disagreed about some students' classroom placements, the agency found technical oversights in only three of the plans, which the district has corrected, Eggerding said.
Following the state's review, the school developed a plan that is meant to increase the number of students with disabilities in general education classrooms. The plan, approved by the Lyons Township High School District 204 Board May 19, calls for solutions such as adding more specialized instructors to general education classrooms and better educating teachers about how to help students with disabilities. The district will be required to report its progress to the state board, according to a letter from a state representative to the district.
Some board members questioned whether trying to meet the state targets might impede the school's efforts to give each student what they need to learn.
Eggerding shared their concerns. "We're always a little uncomfortable with these hard-date numbers because … we're dealing with students," he told the board.
The percentage of students with disabilities at Lyons who spend 80 percent or more of their time in general education classrooms has decreased in recent years, down from 35.5 percent for the 2010-2011 school year, the figures show — a decline for which Eggerding said the district has not determined a cause. He noted that every student has different needs, regardless of what class they are in.
In the future, the district may err on the side of placing students in general education classrooms, he said.
"Perhaps if it's on the borderline we'll start with a student in the general ed classroom instead of the special ed classroom instead of the other way around," he said.

Chicago Department of Family and Support Services To Host Citywide Social Service Resource Fairs On Friday May 30th

The Chicago Department of Family and Support Services (DFSS) will be holding 4 citywide Social Service Resource Fairs on Friday, May 30th from 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Three of the fairs will be located at our service centers including the Garfield Center at 10 S. Kedzie Avenue, The King Center at 4314 S. Cottage Grove, and the South Chicago Center at 8650 S. Commercial Avenue. The resource fair for the North Area Center will be held off-site in the Community Room of the 19th District CAPS Office, 850 W. Addison Street.

These resource fairs will bring together public and private sector social service agencies offering a wide variety of support services for Chicago residents of all ages in areas such as health, education, employment, housing resources, utility assistance and much more.

For DFSS website 

(click to enlarge)


EEOC Disability Harassing Suit Against 'Cleaning Authority of Plainfield' to Proceed

PRESS RELEASE | May 27, 2014
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)

Court Rejects Bid to Dismiss Disability Harassment Claim
CHICAGO - A federal judge has denied a motion to dismiss a claim of disability harassment against Mont Brook, Inc., doing business as The Cleaning Authority of Plainfield, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced today.
In its complaint, the EEOC charged that the house cleaning company violated federal civil rights laws by harassing an employee with a disability. The EEOC said the company's president referred to an employee who walks with an abnormal gait as a result of a stroke as "a cripple," mockingly imitated the way she walks, and told her that she was being a "hysterical basket case" when she objected to that treatment.
The company's motion to dismiss argued that such conduct was not sufficiently severe or pervasive to constitute unlawful harassment. The court rejected that argument and found that the EEOC's allegations were legally sufficient. The case is EEOC v. Mont Brook, Inc. d/b/a The Cleaning Authority of Plainfield, Civil Action No. 13-cv-6799, and is pending in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, in Chicago. The EEOC lawsuit was originally filed September 23, 2013, and the court's decision was docketed on May 22, 2014.
"Harassment of any employee on account of his or her race, national origin, disability status, or any other condition irrelevant to the job is a terrible reflection upon those who engage in it - it just exposes their own ignorance and cruelty," said John Hendrickson, the EEOC regional attorney in Chicago. "Further, it is illegal, and that's why it's an enforcement priority for this office and this agency. With this decision against The Cleaning Authority, the EEOC's challenge to the harassment of this employee is definitely on track and going forward."
The EEOC's Chicago District Office is responsible for processing charges of discrimination, administrative enforcement and the conduct of agency litigation in Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and North and South Dakota, with Area Offices in Milwaukee and Minneapolis.

The EEOC is responsible for enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its website at www.eeoc.gov.