Blind World Magazine

Call center pays $200,000 to blind woman.

December 06, 2005.
United Press International.

CHICAGO, Dec. 6 (UPI) -- A Naperville, Ill.-based telemarketing company agreed to pay $200,000 to a blind woman who was refused a job because she has a guide dog, a report said.

"This case should send a message to employers not to close their doors to disabled applicants and the service animals they use," said Gregory Gochanour, an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission attorney, in announcing Monday's consent decree.

The woman was rejected for the job when Americall Group said it could not accommodate her guide dog.

"Though guide dogs may not be appropriate in all conceivable circumstances, there is no good reason why employers cannot readily accommodate service animals (in) office environments like call centers," Gochanour told the Chicago Sun-Times.

Americall admitted no wrongdoing in the consent decree signed by federal Judge Joan Lefkow and said it would work to hire more blind or visually impaired people.

The company employs 3,000 people in Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Florida, Mexico and the Dominican Republic, the newspaper reported.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International.

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