Settlement Agreement Between The United States Of America And The Administrative Office Of The Nineteenth Judicial Circuit Lake County, Illinois

Department of Justice Complaint Number 204-23-150

Background

  1. This matter was initiated by a complaint filed under title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ("ADA"), 42 U.S.C. ァァ 12131 - 12134, with the United States Department of Justice ("Department") against the Administrative Office of the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit ("Court Services"). The complaint alleges that Court Services and its contractor Adelante, Inc. failed to provide effective communication to an individual probationer at Court-ordered counseling sessions.
  2. The Department of Justice is authorized under 28 C.F.R. Part 35, Subpart F, to investigate fully the allegations of this complaint to determine Court Services' compliance with title II of the ADA and the Department's implementing regulation, issue findings, and, where appropriate, negotiate and secure voluntary compliance agreements. Furthermore, the Attorney General is authorized under 42 U.S.C. ァ 12133 to bring a civil action enforcing title II of the ADA should the Department fail to secure voluntary compliance pursuant to Subpart F. In consideration of the terms of this Agreement as set forth below, the Attorney General agrees to refrain from undertaking further investigation or from filing a civil suit in this matter.
  3. The parties to this Agreement are the United States of America and the Administrative Office of the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit, Lake County, Illinois. In the interest of securing compliance by voluntary means, the parties hereby agree as follows:

Jurisdiction

  1. The ADA applies to Court Services because it is a public entity as defined in the ADA, 42 U.S.C. ァァ 12131-12134, and the Department's implementing regulation at 28 C.F.R. ァ 35.104.
  2. Title II of the ADA prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities on the basis of disability in the services, programs, or activities of a public entity, such as Court Services.
  3. Under the ADA, Court Services is required to ensure that communications with applicants, participants, and members of the public with disabilities are as effective as communications with others who participate in its services, programs and activities.

Remedial Action

  1. The subject of this settlement is: Court Services' obligations to ensure nondiscrimination in contracts with outside agencies, such as Adelante, Inc.
  2. Court Services will continue to adhere to the administrative order of the Supreme Court of Illinois pertaining to title II compliance. Court Services will provide a copy of the administrative order to members of the public upon request.
  3. Court Services agrees that it will include the Equal Opportunity Provision contained on Exhibit A in all of its contracts with service providers entered into after the date of this Agreement and until June 1, 2001. Court Services further agrees that it will monitor its contractors' compliance with this provision. After June 1, 2001, Court Services' contracts will continue to ensure compliance with the applicable provisions of the ADA.
  4. Within 20 days of the effective date of this Agreement, Court Services will compensate the complainant in this matter by sending a certified check in the amount of $14,000.00 by certified mail to the address provided by the Department. Court Services will also send a copy of the check and transmittal letter to the Department.

Implementation and Enforcement

  1. This Agreement is a public document. A copy of the document or any information contained in it may be made available to any person upon request.
  2. The Department of Justice may review compliance with this Agreement at any time. If it determines that this Agreement or any requirement thereof has been violated, it may institute a civil action in Federal district court seeking specific performance of the provisions of this Agreement or the enforcement of the requirements of the ADA following written notice to Court Services of the possible violation and a period of ten days in which Court Services has the opportunity to cure the alleged violation.
  3. Failure by the Department of Justice to enforce this entire Agreement or any provision thereof with respect to any deadline or any other provision herein will not be construed as a waiver of the Department's right to enforce other deadlines and provisions of this Agreement.
  4. The effective date of this Agreement is the date of the last signature below.
  5. This Agreement constitutes the entire agreement between the parties on the matters raised herein, and no other statement, promise, or agreement, either written or oral, made by either party or agents of either party, that is not contained in this written agreement, will be enforceable.
  6. This Agreement is limited to the facts set forth in the first paragraph. This Agreement does not purport to remedy any other potential violations of the ADA or any other Federal law nor does it imply that any such violations exist. This Agreement does not affect Court Services' continuing responsibility to comply with all aspects of title II of the ADA.
  7. The signer of this document for Court Services represents that he is authorized to bind Court Services to this Agreement.

For the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit:

By: __________________________       Date:__________
   Robert A. Zastany
   Court Administrator
   Nineteenth Judicial Circuit
   Lake County, Illinois

For the United States:

By: __________________________       Date:__________
   John L. Wodatch, Chief
   L. Irene Bowen, Deputy
   Susan Reilly, Attorney
   Thomas Esbrook, Investigator
   Disability Rights Section
   U.S. Department of Justice
   P.O. Box 66738
   Washington, D.C. 20035

Equal Opportunity:

The Provider will comply with all state and federal statutes and regulations ensuring equal opportunities for persons in any class protected by law, including but not limited to the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, and the Illinois Human Rights Act as amended.

The Provider will accept referrals from Court Services and will under no circumstances reject an otherwise qualified client because of his or her disability, gender, racial or ethnic background or any other legally protected characteristic.

The Provider will comply with title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 as amended by ensuring that qualified individuals with disabilities are not denied the benefits of Provider's services on the basis of disability. The Provider will provide appropriate auxiliary aids and services, including qualified interpreters, when necessary to ensure effective communication with a disabled client.

Court Services will assist the Provider in providing effective communication to clients who are deaf or hard of hearing in the following manner:

  1. During the term of the Agreement, Court Services will loan the Provider an Audex SounDirector SD-SYS-1 Amplifier System which many individuals who are hard of hearing find sufficient to allow for effective communication. In the event this Audex system is unavailable, an equivalent will be selected and made available to the Provider by Court Services. The Provider will return this system upon expiration of this Agreement.
  2. Court Services maintains a listing of qualified sign language interpreters who provide services at the courthouse and upon request Court Services will make this listing available to the Provider
  3. Court Services will reimburse the Provider for the provision of sign language interpreter services to a client referred by Court Services at the rate of $25/hr. The Provider will pay the remainder of the interpreter's fee. As a condition of reimbursement, the Provider will submit monthly invoices to the Court Administrator identifying the interpreter, his or her hourly fee, the number of hours of interpreter services provided and the client receiving such services.

The Provider will provide the type of auxiliary aid or service requested by a disabled client, except that the Provider is not required to provide a specific interpreter if another qualified interpreter is available to perform at a lesser fee. Any evidence of discrimination will result in immediate termination of this Agreement.

Nothing in this equal opportunity provision will be construed to create an agency or employment relationship between the Provider and Court Services, the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit Court, or the County of Lake.

EXHIBIT A

Esbrook's Directory - "reaagreementrevised"
Revised 6/15/99 per M. Marcouiller's comments dated 6/10. >

Updated August 6, 2015

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