Under the federal Family Medical Leave Act, employees are allowed to take unpaid leave when a medical issue arises, or if they are required to care for a family member due to their medical condition. When the leave period is over, that employee is to be allowed to return to the post they held prior to when the leave was taken, or a position that is substantially similar. However, there have been occasions when an employer engages in discrimination against an employee for taking a prolonged medical leave, and sometimes an employer will even engage in a retaliatory firing in this type of situation. That may have been the case for one woman, who recently decided to pursue a lawsuit against her former employer.
When people are hired for a job, they should reasonably expect to be allowed to do the job they were hired for. This should be true for every employee, including those suffering from a disability. However, a recent story about a former high school teacher serves as an example of how an employer's idea of "budget savings" could lead to a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Any of our Colorado readers who are familiar with the short-lived HBO television series "Luck" are probably also familiar with the fact that the series had quite a few problems. Although the original goal of the series was probably to establish another strong, critically-acclaimed show in the vein of other HBO products like "True Blood" and "Boardwalk Empire," "Luck" just couldn't get around some problems with a key part of the cast - horses.
In today's economic climate, it can seem pretty hard to get a job or hang onto a job. This can be especially true for government employees. There are a number of reasons why a government employee could lose their job when most work on an "at-will" basis. However, no one in Denver or beyond would expect a government entity to engage in discrimination against an employee with a disability, especially when the protections of the Americans with Disabilities Act have become so well known to most employers. But, that is what one government employee, a police officer, is alleging in his lawsuit against his former employer.
Our Colorado readers are certainly among the most aware of Americans that our country's population and laws are both constantly evolving and adapting. While certain specific changes to Colorado state law have made national headlines within the last couple of months, there has been less of a focus on how laws already in place are adapting to our country's changing population. And, for employers, one segment of the population which will need to be taken into consideration over the next several years is former military members who are returning to civilian life - and are doing so with a disability.