The parties have reached an agreement to settle this class action .
Edmond Walker, et. al. v. Patrick Donahoe, Postmaster
On May 17, 2013, EEOC Administrative Judge Mulligan issued an Order Granting Preliminary Approval of the Settlement Agreement.
Notice of Resolution and Preliminary Approval will be mailed to all potential class members on June 17, 2013.
This is a class action, styled as Walker et al. v. Donahoe, Postmaster General, United States Postal Service , brought by Edmond Walker (Complainant) against the Postmaster General of the U.S. Postal Service , alleging that the USPS violated the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. §§ 791 et seq., as amended (Rehabilitation Act), by restricting the duty hours of current and former employees in permanent rehabilitation assignments during the period March 24, 2000 to December 31, 2012.
More Edmond Walker, a Temporary Rural Carrier Relief and the class agent in the Walker class action, filed a complaint on August 19, 2002. Walker alleged that, since April 2000, the Postal Service discriminated against individuals with disabilities by:
1. Placing disabled individuals in permanent rehabilitation positions without engaging in the interactive process as required by law;
2. Restricting disabled individuals who are placed in permanent rehabilitation [sic] to limited work hours without any medical justification and without consulting the individual with a disability;
3. Fail[ing] to allow individuals with a disability, who have been placed in permanent rehabilitation positions, to work the number of hours determined appropriate by the individual and his/her physician and which are available; and
4. Fail[ing] to allow individuals with a disability, who have been placed in permanent rehabilitation positions, to use assistive devices in the workplace to accommodate their disabilities, including but not limited to, electric scooters, notwithstanding that said assistive devices pose no threat to safety or inconvenient [sic] in the workplace.
This claim has been analyzed to include denial of overtime.
“Potential Class Members” are any of the 40,876 current or former USPS employees whose names are contained on the class list provided by the Postal Service as of June 2, 2011.
Total Settlement Amount: In full settlement of all Potential Class Members’ Claims, the Parties agree to a total settlement of $17.25 million ($17,250,000.00). The sum includes all funds for the Qualified Settlement Fund, including all Settlement Awards, Service Awards, and the Class Agent Award, the costs for the Class Administrator, and all attorneys’ fees and costs awarded to Class Counsel
Denial of Liability: The USPS expressly denies any wrongdoing or liability with regard to the allegations contained in the Case. This Settlement Agreement and the payment of the Total Settlement Amount under the Settlement Agreement do not constitute an admission by either Party, as to the merits, validity, or accuracy, or lack thereof, of any of the allegations or Claims in the Case. This Settlement Agreement represents a compromise of disputed claims. It reflects the Parties’ recognition that further litigation of the Case would severely burden all concerned and would require an extraordinary commitment of time and resources. Furthermore, continued litigation of the Case would subject both the USPS and the Class to the risk of unfavorable determinations.
Class Agent Award: In recognition of the added responsibilities borne by Complainant, Edmond Walker, as Class Agent over the course of the last twelve (12) years, and a full release of his claims against USPS, the sum of $30,000 shall be deducted from the Class Fund by the Class Administrator, and used to purchase an annuity for Mr. Walker. The Class Administrator shall purchase the annuity for Mr. Walker three hundred (300) calendar days after the date of the Notice of Final Agency Action, unless the Settlement Agreement is voided or stayed pursuant to Section 3(G) above or for any other reason set forth herein
Service Awards for Active Participation of Potential Class Members: In recognition of the service of Potential Class Members who actively participated in discovery and/or testified at the hearing in this litigation on behalf of the Class, the Parties recommend that subject to the approval of the EEOC Administrative Judge, each Potential Class Member who actively participated in discovery and/or testified at hearing in this litigation shall receive a Service Award of $2,500, in addition to any Settlement Award he or she receives pursuant to the Distribution Plan in Section 5 above, and shall be mailed such Service Award within three hundred (300) days of the Notice of Final Agency Action, if they file timely, fully executed Claim Form and Releases. Exhibit C is a list of individuals who actively participated in this litigation and should receive a $2,500 Service Award. These Service Awards are to be paid from the Class Fund.
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