Most of our Colorado readers have probably experienced the anxiety and excitement that comes with interviewing for a new job. Whether it is a college graduate interviewing for that first position or a seasoned veteran of the workforce looking for a change, the interview process can elicit a range of emotions. But, something that often gets lost in the excitement of attending an interview is the fact that there are certain questions an employer is not allowed to ask a potential employee. This includes questions about a person's health or a disability.
This type of behavior in the hiring process seems to be what landed a grocery store chain in some hot water recently. According to reports, the grocery store chain in question was asking potential employees specific questions about the state of their health - which is prohibited by law. And beyond this, the business is also said to have fired an employee - who apparently suffered from epilepsy - after the employee had a seizure at his worksite.
The Americans with Disabilities Act protects employees from these types of illegal employment practices. Many different types of employment discrimination can be brought to the attention of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for an investigation, and that was the route taken here. It was under the provisions of the ADA that the EEOC charged the grocery store chain.
The good news is that this case was recently settled. The reports indicate that the employer will be required to pay $25,000 to the employee who was fired after having a seizure. The company will also be required to abide by a number of other provisions, which include refraining from engaging in these illegal employment practices.
Source: Business Insurance, "EEOC settles disability charges against grocery chain for $25,000," Judy Greenwald, Dec. 5, 2013