Griffith v. El Paso County Colorado

Filed: August 25, 2023

Court: Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals

Overview: Amicus brief filed explaining that people with disabilities, including people who identify as having gender dysphoria, are not required to show that their exact disability is well-settled across the courts and are entitled to compensatory damages for emotional distress under Title II of the ADA.

Excerpt: “[T]he court erroneously posited that a defendant can be shielded from liability for damages for intentional discrimination based on a contention that one of the elements of the plaintiff’s claim—here, whether the Plaintiff was legally disabled—was unsettled. If permitted to stand, the district court’s analysis will allow entities free rein to discriminate unless and until all courts agree a condition is a covered disability. This will severely weaken enforcement of the ADA… In Cummings, the Supreme Court addressed the very limited question of whether emotional distress damages are available under Section 504 and Section 1557 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, 42 U.S.C. § 18116 (“Section 1557″)… The expansion of Cummings’ bar on emotional distress damages to Title II of the ADA would eliminate an essential remedy that Congress intended to make available to victims of disability discrimination when the ADA was enacted.”

Case Documents

Griffith v. El Paso County Colorado Amicus Brief