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Press Release

Justice Department Sues Arkansas School District for Denying Temporary Remote Work as Reasonable Accommodation

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

The Justice Department announced today that it filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas against West Memphis School District (WMSD) for denying an employee’s request for a reasonable accommodation of temporary telework, in violation of Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The ADA requires that employers provide reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities, which may include telework, when it does not pose an undue hardship to the employer.

The lawsuit alleges that WMSD denied the request of a school science curriculum specialist with a disability temporary telework as a reasonable accommodation to avoid damage to her health. WMSD denied the request without discussing it, or possible alternative accommodations, with the employee. As a result of WMSD’s denial, the employee was forced to resign.

“Telework is an important tool that has increased the ability of many people with disabilities to become or remain employed,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “Employers must have a process in place to reasonably accommodate workers with disabilities, and they must work with those employees to consider options, including telework.”

People with disabilities have historically faced many barriers to employment. Over the past several years, the feasibility of telework has increased, expanding employment opportunities for people with disabilities.

This matter is based on a referral from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Little Rock Area Office, which conducted the initial investigation. This matter is being handled by the Civil Rights Division’s Disability Rights Section.  

For more information on the Civil Rights Division, please visit For more information on the ADA, please call the department’s toll-free ADA Information Line at 1-800-514-0301 (TTY 1-833-610-1264) or visit If you believe you’ve been discriminated against based on disability, please submit a report online at

Updated April 10, 2024

Civil Rights
Disability Rights
Press Release Number: 24-420