Skip to comments.Court says UPS discriminated against deaf drivers
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 ...
Yeah, it's the 9th Circus.
Hi. You're deaf, I'm a lawyer, and I'm gonna use you to make me rich.
When common sense is not politically correct you know you have a jacked up system.
Yeah, and I bet they discriminated against the blind drivers, too!
(/sarc for those so stupid you might think this was serious)
I suppose they discriminate against blind drivers too.
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?
You type faster than I :-)
You have a problem with "Navigation by Braille"????
"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.
Not at our bank's drive-up cash machine. It has braille on the buttons.
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....
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...
Then why does the DOT require that people holding commercial drivers 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.
What is and modified driving technique?
And how would it allow a deaf driver to hear an emergency vehicle.
Where is sanity?
(Incidentally, they should also be offended because they're going to get a "hearing".)
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.
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.