CHICAGO (CBS) — Parents and teachers gathered at a Southwest Side school Tuesday morning to demand Chicago Public Schools find the funding to keep a longtime clerk who uses a wheelchair.

Friends, parents and teachers rallied around Judy Mahoney outside Byrne Elementary in Garfield Ridge on Tuesday.

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CPS moved Mahoney to Byrne after she was hit by a drunk driver in 2017, and left paralyzed from the waist down.

At the time, she was working as a school clerk at Whittier Elementary in the Heart of Chicago neighborhood, but that building is not wheelchair accessible.

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Now the Chicago Teachers Union says her job at Byrne was just cut due to a lack of funding, while her old school can still pay for a clerk. The union believes Mahoney is being unfairly penalized by the district’s lack of accessibility.

“We lack so much accessibility in the Chicago Public Schools. This is why I am in this predicament,” Mahoney said. “We just want to work. We are not disposable.”

“I admire her, because instead of her giving up, she is working for getting what she deserves,” said Emma Pileda, Mahoney’s sister.

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CPS did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Mahoney’s job and CTU’s claims.

CBS 2 Chicago Staff