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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Justice Department Reaches Agreement with a North Carolina YMCA to Ensure Equal Opportunities for Children with Diabetes

The Justice Department reached a settlement agreement today with YMCA of the Triangle in Raleigh, North Carolina, to resolve allegations that it violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by denying a child the opportunity to participate in an after-school program because of his Type 1 diabetes.

Title III of the ADA prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability by public accommodations, including private camps and childcare programs.  Under the ADA, such entities generally must make reasonable modifications to their policies, practices or procedures when necessary to provide equal access to a child with a disability.  When a parent and a child’s physician determine that it is appropriate for a trained layperson to assist a child with diabetes care, a camp or childcare program must provide this as a reasonable modification under the ADA, unless doing so would fundamentally alter the program.

YMCA of the Triangle refused to perform diabetes related tasks, including administering glucagon in the event of a low blood glucose level emergency.  YMCA of the Triangle serves Wake, Durham, Lee, Johnston, Orange, Chatham and Pamlico counties in North Carolina, with 13 branches and three overnight camps.  It administers after-school programs at 53 sites to nearly 5,000 children.

“After-school and camp programs enable children to learn from their peers and socialize with their friends,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta, head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.  “Parents must be able to trust that their kids will receive the care and support they need, and providers who run these programs must fully comply with the ADA.  The Justice Department will continue to aggressively fight all forms of discrimination that deny children with disabilities the protections the law requires and the opportunities they deserve.”

Under the terms of the agreement, the YMCA will:

  • adopt a non-discrimination policy;
  • train its staff on the ADA and diabetes management;
  • provide information for parents on how to request modifications for children with disabilities;
  • designate an ADA compliance officer who will monitor compliance with the agreement and review requests for reasonable modifications, among other duties;
  • pay $5,000 in compensation to the complainant; and
  • report to the United States on its compliance on an annual basis. 

ADA enforcement is a top priority of the department’s Civil Rights Division.  Those interested in finding out more about this settlement or the obligations of camps and child care programs under the ADA may call the department’s toll-free ADA information line at 800-514-0301 or 800-514-0383 (TDD) or access its ADA website at www.ada.gov.  ADA complaints may be filed online at http://www.ada.gov/complaint/.

YMCA of the Triangle Settlement Agreement

Civil Rights
Press Release Number: 
Updated July 28, 2016