By Associated Press - Wednesday, May 20, 2020

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission said Wednesday a northern New Mexico hospital will pay $98,000 to settle a discrimination and retaliation lawsuit filed by the agency.

The case against Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center in Santa Fe was filed on behalf of an employee who claimed a supervisor subjected her to a hostile work environment because she is deaf. The lawsuit accused the hospital of failing to provide reasonable accommodations for Asheley Coriz and firing her because of her disability and complaints she made about her supervisor’s conduct.

Under the terms of the court-approved settlement, Coriz will get $98,000 in back pay and compensatory damages. Her personnel records also will be expunged, and she will receive a letter of acknowledgment from a hospital manager.

The decree also enjoins Christus St. Vincent from engaging in disability discrimination and retaliation and requires hospital officials to revise their equal employment opportunity and reasonable accommodation policies.

The hospital will provide annual training to all employees and report to the EEOC on any complaints of disability discrimination during the decree’s three-year term.

Sandra Dominguez, human resources vice president at Christus St. Vincent, said the hospital supports all legal requirements under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

“Cases such as this serve as a reminder of the importance of ensuring that our everyday practices adhere to all legal requirements,” she said.

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