A class action employment discrimination lawsuit has been filed against
a large health care company alleging systemic discrimination against job
applicants and employees. The discrimination suit alleges that adverse
employment actions were taken against several individuals as the result
of perceived or actual disabilities.
Pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Americans
with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA), it is illegal to discriminate
against qualified individuals with a disability in regards to their employment
The ADA also prohibits disability harassment and retaliation against you
for complaining about disability discrimination or for participating in
someone else’s disability discrimination case.
Not all injuries, illnesses or even medically defined disabilities are
covered by the ADA. The ADA projects a specific class of individuals—qualified
individuals with a disability. A qualified individual with a disability
is an individual with any medical, physiological, or psychiatric condition
that substantially limits a major life activity. Temporary conditions
or conditions that, although serious, don’t substantially limit
any of your major life activities are not covered.
However, disabilities that are not actual but “perceived” may
be covered. For example,
in some cases (such as an employee with HIV or AIDS), an employee may have
a condition that does not affect him or her (or other employees) in any
way, but due to unfounded fears or stereotypes held by the employer, the
employer believes that the employee is disabled. If such an employer were
to take an adverse action against such an employee based on this perception
that could violate the ADA.
According to the complaint in this instance, a class of applicants and
employees were negatively affected by the company’s practice of
denying hire, accommodating people with disabilities, and ultimately firing
individuals who were regarded as disabled, had a record of a disability
or had an actual disability. Further, in some situations the company discharged
or revoked the job offers of class members upon learning of or receiving
records of prior medical conditions or current medical restrictions.
Such practices are prohibited. For more information or if you or someone
you know may have been the victim of discrimination, please contact the
experienced Atlanta employment discrimination lawyers at Buckley Beal
LLP for an immediate consultation.