A criminal intelligence specialist in the Department of Justice is one of seven name plaintiffs in a deaf discrimination lawsuit (download complaint) that accuses the state of discriminating against deaf employees.Corey Brasier, who has worked in the DOJ’s Sacramento office since 2005, said his supervisors have repeatedly denied his requests for certified interpreter services, which has hampered his ability to communicate with co-workers and officers in local law enforcement agencies, according to the complaint filed in San Francisco Superior Court. Brasier said that he was left in the building once during a fire drill because no one alerted him and there were no warning lights installed in the office.
Brasier’s complaints are similar to others lodged by the plaintiffs, who say their efforts to secure regular interpreting services have been rebuffed by supervisors who cite budget cuts.
Even Westrup, a deputy press secretary for Attorney General Jerry Brown, said in an email that the department is reviewing the complaint and had no comment.
The lawsuit doesn’t seek damages. Instead, the plaintiffs say they want the state to create a system that ensures workers have access to certified American Sign Language interpreters when they’re needed as well as safety protocols and a process for resolving complaints.
The employees are represented by the Berkeley-based Disability Rights Advocates and attorneys with Schneider Wallace Cottrell Brayton Konecky in San Francisco.