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Court says UPS discriminated against deaf drivers
AP ^ | 10/10/6 | DAVID KRAVETS

Posted on 10/10/2006 12:59:50 PM PDT by SmithL

San Francisco -- A federal appeals court on Tuesday upheld a lower court ruling that UPS Inc. violated anti-discrimination laws by automatically barring the deaf and hearing-impaired from driving parcel delivery trucks.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson's 2004 ruling that the Atlanta-based company's practices breach the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Henderson, in a class-action case representing as many as 1,000 would-be drivers, ruled that the hearing impaired should "be given the same opportunities that a hearing applicant would be given to show that they can perform the job of package-car driver safely and effectively." The San Francisco federal court order was stayed pending appeal.

On appeal, UPS maintained its hiring practice was a safety issue and that it was not discriminating. The company did not immediately have a comment, a spokesman said.

"While UPS offered anecdotal testimony involving situations where a driver avoided an accident because he or she heard a warning sound, the company ... failed to show that those accidents would not also have been avoided by a deaf driver who was compensated for his or her loss of hearing by, for example, adapting modified driving techniques or using compensatory devices such as backing cameras or additional mirrors," Judge Marsha Berzon wrote for a three-judge panel of the appeals court.

The case was litigated by Disability Rights Advocates who represented current and former employees who were passed over for driving positions, and other potential employees who consented to what the group dubbed UPS's "deaf-need-not-apply" policy.

(Excerpt) Read more at sfgate.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: 9thcircus; deaf; dhoh; ups; whatcanbrowndo
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Huh?
1 posted on 10/10/2006 12:59:51 PM PDT by SmithL
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Yeah, it's the 9th Circus.


2 posted on 10/10/2006 1:00:16 PM PDT by SmithL (Where are we going? . . . . And why are we in this handbasket????)
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To: SmithL

Hi. You're deaf, I'm a lawyer, and I'm gonna use you to make me rich.


3 posted on 10/10/2006 1:01:45 PM PDT by the invisib1e hand (* nuke * the * jihad *)
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To: SmithL

When common sense is not politically correct you know you have a jacked up system.


4 posted on 10/10/2006 1:01:53 PM PDT by L98Fiero (Evil is an exact science)
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To: SmithL

Yeah, and I bet they discriminated against the blind drivers, too!

(/sarc for those so stupid you might think this was serious)


5 posted on 10/10/2006 1:02:19 PM PDT by TommyDale (Iran President Ahmadinejad is shorter than Tom Daschle!)
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To: SmithL

I suppose they discriminate against blind drivers too.


6 posted on 10/10/2006 1:02:43 PM PDT by T'wit (It is not possible to "go too far" criticizing liberals. No matter what you say, they're worse.)
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To: SmithL

Are they out of their minds? Driving deaf is a serious safety issue. I am sure their insurer would not allow it. So what will be next? Will the 9th Circuit rule that UPS should be forced to hire blind drivers as well?


7 posted on 10/10/2006 1:02:56 PM PDT by Hoodat ( ETERNITY - Smoking, or Non-smoking?)
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To: TommyDale

You type faster than I :-)


8 posted on 10/10/2006 1:03:40 PM PDT by T'wit (It is not possible to "go too far" criticizing liberals. No matter what you say, they're worse.)
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To: TommyDale

You have a problem with "Navigation by Braille"????


9 posted on 10/10/2006 1:04:41 PM PDT by SmithL (Where are we going? . . . . And why are we in this handbasket????)
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To: SmithL

"While UPS offered anecdotal testimony involving situations where a driver avoided an accident because he or she heard a warning sound, the company ... failed to show that those accidents would not also have been avoided by a deaf driver who was compensated for his or her loss of hearing by, for example, adapting modified driving techniques or using compensatory devices such as backing cameras or additional mirrors,"
______________________________________________________

Yeah dang it. UPS should spend millions more dollars on equipment, cover casuality/auto insurance costs for hearing impared drivers that WILL raise rates all the while to add some deaf drivers.

UPS should not be able to decide WHO they hire. In fact NO company should decide that. The government knows best how to manage a company, hire productive employees and all companies should listen.

This just in, blind drivers sue for right to enter NASCAR races.


10 posted on 10/10/2006 1:04:43 PM PDT by MadeInAmerica (- If ILLEGAL means Undocumented - Then Breaking and Entering means Unannounced Visit)
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To: TommyDale
Yeah, and I bet they discriminated against the blind drivers, too!

Not at our bank's drive-up cash machine. It has braille on the buttons.

11 posted on 10/10/2006 1:07:11 PM PDT by Cobra64 (Why is the War on Terror being managed by the DEFENSE Department?)
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To: SmithL

So, who's paying the liability insurance policy premiums? Will they dramatically increase now? If so, who pays for that?

Is UPS held indemnified and held harmless if the deaf driver kills or injures someone?

I think I know the answers....


12 posted on 10/10/2006 1:07:19 PM PDT by azhenfud (an enigma between two parentheses)
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To: the invisib1e hand
Hi. You're deaf, I'm a lawyer, and I'm gonna use you to make me rich.

Hi. You're a deaf UPS driver, and I'm a different lawyer, and I'm going to use you to make me rich, too.

Shame about the dead toddler, tho...

13 posted on 10/10/2006 1:07:30 PM PDT by gridlock (The 'Pubbies will pick up at least TWO seats in the Senate and FOUR seats in the House in 2006)
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To: the invisib1e hand
From the article:

"Each deaf person has to be assessed individually to make a determination, just like a hearing person, as to whether they can safely drive a UPS truck," he added. "That's all we ever asked."

The dispute centered on UPS's custom of denying hearing-impaired workers jobs operating delivery trucks weighing under 10,000 pounds. - end quote

Indeed I have a hearing disability (no two are exactly alike) and mine is helped with a hearing aid -

Flame away at lawyers, etc however IMO if they are making a blanket rule to not even test out a prospective driver - under the Americans with disabilities Act they may well have a valid case of overt corporate discrimination?
14 posted on 10/10/2006 1:07:55 PM PDT by VRWCTexan (History has a long memory - but still repeats itself)
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To: SmithL
"While UPS offered anecdotal testimony involving situations where a driver avoided an accident because he or she heard a warning sound, the company ... failed to show that those accidents would not also have been avoided by a deaf driver who was compensated for his or her loss of hearing by, for example, adapting modified driving techniques or using compensatory devices such as backing cameras or additional mirrors," Judge Marsha Berzon wrote for a three-judge panel of the appeals court.

Then why does the DOT require that people holding commercial driver’s licenses need to “hear a forced whisper” at however-many (20?) feet?

They sure used to the last five or so DOT physicals I took.

Maybe they should take a shot at the DOT for denying them the ability to hold a CDL.

15 posted on 10/10/2006 1:08:09 PM PDT by Who dat?
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To: SmithL
failed to show that those accidents would not also have been avoided by a deaf driver who was compensated for his or her loss of hearing by, for example, adapting modified driving techniques or using compensatory devices such as backing cameras or additional mirrors,"

What is and modified driving technique?

And how would it allow a deaf driver to hear an emergency vehicle.

16 posted on 10/10/2006 1:09:24 PM PDT by rocksblues (Liberals will stop at nothing.)
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To: SmithL

Where is sanity?


17 posted on 10/10/2006 1:10:26 PM PDT by PetroniusMaximus
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To: SmithL

What?

(Incidentally, they should also be offended because they're going to get a "hearing".)


18 posted on 10/10/2006 1:10:57 PM PDT by Doohickey (I am not unappeasable. YOU are just too easily appeased.)
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To: VRWCTexan
ohhhpuuuuuleeeeze!

why don't you go try to get a job as a pilot with your hearing loss? because no one would hire you, that's why.

I'd never hire someone who's hearing wasn't very nearly perfect to drive my trucks (if I had any). Far too much liability: you cannot FORCE someone to take on liability. Not in a fair world, at least.

19 posted on 10/10/2006 1:11:03 PM PDT by the invisib1e hand (* nuke * the * jihad *)
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To: Hoodat

Many deaf people drive safely, especially with some accomodations to their disability, as the article mentions.

I'd be more concerned about their ability to communicate effectively with customers.


20 posted on 10/10/2006 1:11:04 PM PDT by -YYZ-
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To: SmithL

Yes! And the nerve of UPS. They also discriminate against BLIND drivers. How dare they.


21 posted on 10/10/2006 1:11:15 PM PDT by The Ghost of FReepers Past (Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light..... Isaiah 5:20)
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To: T'wit

You'll get arrested for Driving While Blind. (Cue the ZZ Top)


22 posted on 10/10/2006 1:12:09 PM PDT by dfwgator
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To: -YYZ-
Many deaf people drive safely, especially with some accomodations to their disability, as the article mentions...

please, can we reason above the jr high level?

Being physically capable of operating a vehicle doesn't qualify one to be a professional operator, any more than being able to swing a bat qualifies one for a profession in baseball.

23 posted on 10/10/2006 1:13:18 PM PDT by the invisib1e hand (* nuke * the * jihad *)
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To: the invisib1e hand

No case like this should be allowed unless the plantiffs use deaf counsel, and no judge should be allowed to rule unless he is also deaf.


24 posted on 10/10/2006 1:13:28 PM PDT by The Ghost of FReepers Past (Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light..... Isaiah 5:20)
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To: SmithL

Horn? I didn't hear no horn...........


25 posted on 10/10/2006 1:15:18 PM PDT by AxelPaulsenJr (Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.)
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To: The Ghost of FReepers Past
"no judge should be allowed to rule unless he is also deaf."

The Ninth Circus has selective hearing loss...

26 posted on 10/10/2006 1:16:36 PM PDT by traditional1
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To: SmithL
Didn't you hear those police sirens?

Didn't you hear those fire engine sirens.

Didn't you hear her screaming not to backup.

Didn't you hear them blowing the horn? etc.

27 posted on 10/10/2006 1:16:52 PM PDT by Capt. Tom (Don't confuse the Bushies with the dumb Republicans - Capt. Tom)
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To: SmithL

Next up, man with no arms sues the US Olympic committee for not letting him compete in the clean and jerk weightlifting event.


28 posted on 10/10/2006 1:17:26 PM PDT by antiRepublicrat
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To: VRWCTexan
I don't think UPS is ignoring the distinction between hearing impaired and deaf.

More to the point is what is the opinion of the insurance underwriter and what exactly do actuarial tables show with respect to deaf vs. hearing impaired vs. hearing impaired w/assistance vs. no hearing impairment. The court has no responsibility to an under-capitalized business, eh?
29 posted on 10/10/2006 1:19:38 PM PDT by Ouderkirk (Don't you think it's interesting how death and destruction seems to happen wherever Muslims gather?)
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To: the invisib1e hand

I would except for the tiny fact that I make considerably more income than the best paid pilots - based on my brain, education and 37 years of industry knowledge....

Frankly IMO all these ill-informed and sarcastic posts on this thread fully demonstrate a high level of ignorance with respect to peoples abilities -- that also happen to have varying degrees of so called handicaps –

Last time I checked Jim Rob that founded this board was doing a pretty good job from his wheel-chair.?


30 posted on 10/10/2006 1:20:22 PM PDT by VRWCTexan (History has a long memory - but still repeats itself)
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To: SmithL

ADA - Full Lawyer Employment Act.

Worst law EVER.


31 posted on 10/10/2006 1:21:00 PM PDT by SJSAMPLE
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To: rocksblues

A "modified" driving technique would be to force UPS to hire a person qualified to sign to the driver. Before you think I'm kidding, a "hearing impaired" drafter sued a company I worked for to hire a translator to sit next to him and sign verbal instructions from the engineer.


32 posted on 10/10/2006 1:21:54 PM PDT by jonascord ("Let 'em burn!...")
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To: SmithL

The blind stand in line at UPS' personnel office door today.


33 posted on 10/10/2006 1:23:09 PM PDT by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: the invisib1e hand

Many deaf people drive safely, especially with some accomodations to their disability, as the article mentions...
please, can we reason above the jr high level?

Being physically capable of operating a vehicle doesn't qualify one to be a professional operator, any more than being able to swing a bat qualifies one for a profession in baseball.

_____________________________________________


Ouch, bet he didn't see or hear that one comming. ROFL


34 posted on 10/10/2006 1:23:52 PM PDT by MadeInAmerica (- If ILLEGAL means Undocumented - Then Breaking and Entering means Unannounced Visit)
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To: SJSAMPLE
Deaf people make excellent drivers. They aren't distracted by Nuisances such as Fire Engine Sirens.
35 posted on 10/10/2006 1:25:00 PM PDT by massgopguy ((I owe everything to George Bailey))
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To: VRWCTexan
Last time I checked Jim Rob that founded this board was doing a pretty good job from his wheel-chair.?

Yeah, but did he SUE someone to let him?
36 posted on 10/10/2006 1:27:09 PM PDT by beezdotcom
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To: massgopguy

Or screaming passengers.


37 posted on 10/10/2006 1:27:27 PM PDT by SJSAMPLE
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To: jimrob

Following the "ping someone if mentioned" rule...


38 posted on 10/10/2006 1:28:01 PM PDT by beezdotcom
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To: LasVegasMac

Big Brown Truck Ping...


39 posted on 10/10/2006 1:29:22 PM PDT by tubebender (Growing old is mandatory...Growing up is optional)
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To: VRWCTexan

Last time I checked Jim Rob that founded this board was doing a pretty good job from his wheel-chair.?
____________________________________________________

IS he applying for a job delivering packages? What a silly comment trying to apply the two from a logical point.


40 posted on 10/10/2006 1:30:45 PM PDT by MadeInAmerica (- If ILLEGAL means Undocumented - Then Breaking and Entering means Unannounced Visit)
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To: SmithL
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court

AGNSTA...

41 posted on 10/10/2006 1:31:32 PM PDT by Dead Corpse (Well, my days of not taking your seriously are certainly coming to a middle)
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To: L98Fiero

If I were blind I would be sueing the hell out of them. /s


42 posted on 10/10/2006 1:32:32 PM PDT by A Texan (Oderint dum metuant)
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To: SmithL
"Each deaf person has to be assessed individually to make a determination, just like a hearing person, as to whether they can safely drive a UPS truck," he added. "That's all we ever asked."

I completely agree. They are deaf, not blind -- two totally different disabilities. A deaf person can operate a vehicle just fine and probably more observant of their surroundings than the hearing.

43 posted on 10/10/2006 1:33:46 PM PDT by flutters (God Bless The USA)
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To: jonascord
Wow, that makes perfect sense.

They always say two heads are better than one.

44 posted on 10/10/2006 1:34:33 PM PDT by rocksblues (Liberals will stop at nothing.)
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To: VRWCTexan
Please explain why companies should be forced to pay extra money by the government so that people the companies were mandated to hire, regardless of skills or abilities, can demand more and more "rights".

The ideas of handicapped derived "entitlements" is PC run amok.

45 posted on 10/10/2006 1:36:11 PM PDT by jonascord ("Let 'em burn!...")
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To: VRWCTexan

The real problem is in the well meaning but damaging Americans With Disabilities Act. Like OSHA, good intnetions organized into a bureacracy always result in negative unintended consequences.


46 posted on 10/10/2006 1:39:25 PM PDT by GladesGuru (In a society predicated upon Liberty, it is essential to examine principles, - -)
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To: flutters

It's against the law in most (all?) states to drive wearing headphones. Wonder what the reasoning is behind that?


47 posted on 10/10/2006 1:44:52 PM PDT by scan59 (No matter where you go, there you are.)
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To: jonascord
This is all very confusing to me. PArt of California CDL requirements include:

"What Are The Other Requirements For A CDL?

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations require drivers to be at least 21 years old and pass a physical examination once every 2 years. The main physical requirements include good hearing, 20/40 vision with or without glasses or corrective lenses, and a 70-degree field of vision in each eye. Drivers must not be colorblind."

http://www.testquestionsandanswers.com/cdl/california.html

Can the 9th Curcus overule that by fiat? Don't think so.

48 posted on 10/10/2006 1:46:08 PM PDT by GaltMeister (“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.”)
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To: SmithL
If I'd known I could have driven for UPS, I would have signed up. I'm deaf and read lips.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." -Manuel II Paleologus

49 posted on 10/10/2006 1:47:26 PM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: -YYZ-
Many deaf people drive safely, especially with some accomodations to their disability, as the article mentions.

I see young kids driving by with music blaring so loud, they may as well be deaf.

CTTOI, our UPS driver has a DeWalt boom box thumping away in the cab of his truck.
50 posted on 10/10/2006 1:48:02 PM PDT by HEY4QDEMS (Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.)
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