Published January, 1997

United States v. ABC Nursery, Inc., Complaint, United States District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin, U.S. Department of Justice (1997)

The U.S. Department of Justice filed this complaint on behalf of a woman whose nephew was denied placement in a child care center in violation of title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The child was originally offered a place at the center, but was then denied when his HIV-positive status was discovered, forcing his aunt to pay for a babysitter rather than government-subsidized enrollment in a child care center. The complaint alleges that the center violated the ADA by excluding the child from the center and its services, imposing eligibility criteria that screen out people with HIV, failing to make reasonable modifications to policies in order to offer equal advantages to people with HIV, and discriminating against the aunt by virtue of her relationship to the child with HIV. The complaint seeks a declaration that the center’s actions discriminated against a person with HIV in violation of the ADA, monetary damages for the aunt, and an order prohibiting the center from discriminating against others on the basis of their HIV status. The DOJ also requests that a civil penalty be assessed against the center. Civil penalties, which are paid to the United States, can be as much as $50,000 for the first ADA violation, and up to $100,000 for each subsequent violation in this case.