After more than 20 years as a janitor, the school where G.D. worked threatened to fire him.  The Department of Education (DOE) had conducted a background check that required G.D., who is deaf, to fill out a questionnaire to determine whether he had the appropriate moral character to do his job. But the DOE did not provide a deaf interpreter even though G.D. communicates in American Sign Language and has a limited grasp of written English.  G.D., therefore, did not understand the form and answered “no” to the question about his criminal history (although he had two misdemeanor convictions).  He answered “yes” to the questions about his history of child abuse/support arrears (although he had none).  Over the course of three years and multiple hearings, LAC’s attorney argued that G.D. would have answered the questions correctly had a deaf interpreter been present.  LAC also explained that G.D.’s years-old misdemeanors were not work-related and that the DOE was potentially breaking laws prohibiting discrimination against people with disabilities.  Thanks to LAC’s intervention, G.D. was able to keep his job and his independence.

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