Pirtek USA LLC has settled a $ 85,000 disability discrimination lawsuit.
Unfortunately, discrimination in the workplace is common, but agencies and individuals work hard to combat it. Sometimes charges of discrimination become lawsuits and those lawsuits lead to settlements. For example, Pirtek USA LLC, headquartered in Rockledge, Florida, recently agreed to pay $ 85,000 to settle a disability discrimination lawsuit. The lawsuit was filed by the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in the US District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Orlando Department. It was alleged that “Pirtek violated federal law by firing an employee for a perceived disability.”
Seal of the EEOC; Image courtesy of the US Government via Wikimedia Commons, https://commons.wikimedia.org
According to the lawsuit, the employee involved in the lawsuit was responsible for cutting and transporting hydraulic hoses. He worked for the company for 10 years. At the end of 2015, however, he was hospitalized for “several weeks with pancreatitis, acute respiratory distress syndrome and pneumonia”. Although Pirtek had given his doctor full permission in March 2016 to return to work, he fired him. The company claimed the employee was “liable and feared he would get injured on the job”.
In the lawsuit, the EEOC accused the company of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which prohibits employers from discriminating based on a disability or perceived disability.
In addition to the settlement funds, the three-year consent decree requires that the company “develop and disseminate a written policy against discrimination on the basis of disability and conduct anti-discrimination training for management and staff”. In addition, Pirtek must “publish a notice of the lawsuit at its construction site and submit written reports to the EEOC twice a year”.
Commenting on the settlement, Robert Weisberg, EEOC’s Miami District regional attorney, said:
“Too often employers rely on unsubstantiated assumptions about a worker’s ability to do their job rather than the results of a medical exam. This agreement reflects the EEOC’s commitment to protect workers’ rights to be free from discrimination based on disability in the workplace, including through litigation when necessary. “
Bradley Anderson, acting director of the Miami District for EEOC, also intervened, saying:
“The dismissal of people because of a perceived disability is a longstanding violation of federal law. This resolution brings EEOC closer to its mission to eradicate disability discrimination in the American workplace. “
The US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) aims to help improve opportunities in the workplace. It enforces federal laws put in place to prevent discrimination in the workplace, including discrimination based on disability, age, race, and pregnancy.
EEOC’s Miami District Office includes EEOC offices in Tampa, Miami, and San Juan. Its jurisdiction includes Florida, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands.
Pirtek USA pays $ 85,000 to resolve disability discrimination lawsuit against EEOC
EEOC is suing Pirtek USA for disability discrimination