Many of our Colorado readers may know that whenever an employee has a discrimination complaint to take up against an employer the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is likely to get involved. A discrimination problem can arise from a variety of employer behaviors, such as discrimination based on a person's race, nationality, gender or even a person's disability. When a discrimination claim is based on a disability, however, the Americans with Disabilities Act comes into play in addition to other employment-based laws.
That was the case in a recent controversy involving a former employee at Staffworks Investment, LLC. The business is one of the largest staffing companies in America and the employee was assigned to a temporary placement. The employee is disabled and has a prosthetic leg. So, when the company informed the employee that she would be removed from the assignment because they were afraid she might get bumped or knocked over, the employee decided to pursue the matter with the EEOC.
As a result of this employee's desire to hold her employer accountable for the company's discriminatory behavior, the company recently agreed to pay a $100,000 settlement in the case. The business will also have to report to the EEOC on discrimination matters regularly. The EEOC apparently took issue with a company removing an employee from an assignment simply because of a belief that the person's disability could lead to an injury on the job.
With the stagnant U.S. economy people throughout the country are still having a tough time finding employment. It is most likely even harder for those individuals with disabilities. Fortunately though, disabled employees have the ADA to provide certain protections and requirements for employers to follow.
Source: Oye! Times, "Staffmark Pays $100,000 Consent Decree to End EEOC Disabilities Lawsuit," Stephen Pate, July 18, 2013