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Press Release 05-10-2012

Randstad US, LP to Pay $60,000 to Settle EEOC Disability Bias Suit

Qualified  Candidate Denied Hire Because of Asperger's, Federal Agency Charged

BALTIMORE – A large  nationwide employment referral and placement services company will pay $60,000  and furnish substantial injunctive relief to settle a disability discrimination  lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the  agency announced today.

According  to the EEOC's suit (Civil Action No. 1:11-cv-01303-WDQ),  filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, Randstad US, LP refused  to hire Jason O'Dell, who applied for employment with Randstad's Frederick, Md.,branch,because  of his disability, Asperger's syndrome, an autism spectrum disorder. Based on his qualifications for the lab  technician position he sought, Randstad had originally fast-tracked O'Dell's  participation in the hiring process.  Soon after he disclosed the disability, however, O'Dell was told that  the lab technician position had been put "on hold," and he was not hired.  Meanwhile,Randstad continued to recruit for the position.

Such  alleged conduct violates the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), which makes  it unlawful to discriminate against a qualified individual with a  disability. The EEOC filed suit after  first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation  process.

In addition  to the monetary relief of $60,000 to be paid to O'Dell, the consent decree  settling the suit provides significant remedial relief. Randstad will:

  • create an active account for O'Dell on its Randstad University  Online  Training Center (RUOTC) and permit him to enroll in 10 classes,  courses  or other training of his choice, free of charge;
  • modify its anti-discrimination, harassment and  reasonable accommodationpolicy statements andmake the new  statements available to current and newly hired employeesnationwide;
  • provide two hours of on-site training to all internal  employees working in  the  Frederick, Md., branch and amend its existing nationwide employment    law  compliance training for both current and newly hired employees; and
  • post  a notice  in all of its Maryland  branches affirming its commitment to  provide  a workplace free of discriminationwhere personnel decisions will be made  without regard to people's  disabilities or their need for a reasonable accommodation.

"Employers  must make employment decisions based on the applicant's ability to perform the  duties of the job, not uninformed prejudices or irrational fears," said EEOC  Regional Attorney Debra M. Lawrence. "We  brought this lawsuit because the underlying purpose of the ADA is to eliminate employment discrimination  for people with disabilities who are qualified to do the job."

According  to its website,, Randstad  is one of the industry's largest recruitment companies, with a nationwide  network of nearly 350 branch locations in the United States.

The EEOC enforces federal laws  prohibiting employment discrimination. Further  information about the Commission is available on its web site at