Settlement Agreement Between The United States Of America And Vernon Parish, Louisiana


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 Vernon Parish. The complaint was received by the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice, under the authority of 28 C.F.R. Part 35, Subpart F. The complainant alleges that Vernon Parish has not completed either a self-evaluation or a transition plan, in violation of section 35.105 of the Department's title II regulation. 28 C.F.R. ァ35.105.

The Department is authorized under 28 C.F.R. Part 35, Subpart F, to investigate fully the allegations of the complainant in this matter to determine the compliance of Vernon Parish with title II of the ADA and the Department's implementing title II regulation, to issue findings, and, where appropriate, to 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 civil suit in this matter.

The parties to this Agreement are the United States of America and Vernon Parish. In order to avoid the burdens and expenses of an investigation and possible litigation, the parties hereby agree as follows:

  1. Vernon Parish is a public entity as defined in the Department of Justice's regulation implementing title II of the ADA. 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 Vernon Parish.
  3. Under the ADA, the services, programs, or activities provided by Vernon Parish, when viewed in their entirety, must be readily accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities.
  4. The subject of this Agreement is the completion of the self-evaluation and implementation of the transition plan for Vernon Parish.
  5. Within SIXTY (60) days of the effective date of this agreement, Vernon Parish will complete the self-evaluation of the employment and communications policies of the parish.
  6. Vernon Parish will submit a report on its completion and implementation of the matters set forth in paragraphs 4 and 5 within NINETY (90) days of the effective date of this Agreement. This report will include the self-evaluation of the employment and communications policies and the progress, at the time of the report, of the changes made pursuant to the transition plan.
  7. If at any time Vernon Parish desires to modify any portion of this Agreement because of changed conditions making performance impossible or impractical or for any other reason, it shall promptly notify the Department in writing, setting forth the facts and circumstances thought to justify modification and the substance of the proposed modification. Until there is written Agreement by the Department to the proposed modification, the proposed modification shall not take effect.
  8. The Department 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 seeking specific performance of the provisions of this Agreement in an appropriate Federal court.
  9. Failure by the Department to enforce this entire Agreement or any provision thereof with regard to any deadline or any other provision herein shall not be construed as a waiver of the Department's right to enforce other deadlines and provisions of this Agreement.
  10. In the event that Vernon Parish fails to comply in a timely manner with any requirement of this Agreement without obtaining sufficient advance written agreement with the Department as a temporary modification of the relevant terms of this Agreement, all terms of this Agreement shall become enforceable in an appropriate Federal court.
  11. This Agreement is a public document. A copy of this document or any information contained in it may be made available to any person by Vernon Parish or the Department on request.
  12. The effective date of this Agreement is the date of the last signature below.
  13. 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, shall be enforceable. This Agreement does not purport to remedy any other potential violations of the ADA or any other Federal law. This Agreement does not affect Vernon Parish's continuing responsibility to comply with all aspects of the ADA.

    For Vernon Parish:

    _____________________________________      Date:__________

    For the United States:

    Acting Assistant Attorney General
    for Civil Rights

    _____________________________________      Date:__________
       JOHN WODATCH, Chief
       ALLISON NICHOL, Deputy Chief
       Disability Rights Section
       Civil Rights Division
       U.S. Department of Justice
       P.O. Box 66118
       Washington, D.C. 20035-6118

Updated August 6, 2015

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