Two hearing-impaired women have sued the District’s public housing agency, claiming it has “routinely” denied them and other deaf residents sign-language interpreters required under federal law.
Jacqueline Young and Latheda Wilson filed suit Tuesday in U.S. District Court. The D.C. Housing Authority, they claim, has subjected them to “degrading treatment” by forcing them to communicate with agency representatives through “scribbled notes, attempts at lip reading, or bringing their children or other family members.”
Those “inferior and ineffective means of communication,” they said, have interfered with their efforts to secure more appropriate housing and have put their residency status at risk.
They are joined in the lawsuit by the nonprofit Deaf-REACH, which claims the authority’s failure to provide the interpreters have required it to divert resources away from its other programs.
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