Late last month, a man filed a lawsuit after his employer fired him. The Los Angeles man said the employer wrongfully terminated him after he was diagnosed with HIV and had to take medications that made him ill. According to a news report, he then asked his employer for reasonable accommodations to perform the duties of his job, but was fired.
Not only did the restaurant he worked for fire him, but he was asked for disability information not related to the function of his job. When an employer asks for more information than they need to make a reasonable accommodation they may end up embarrassing the employee and make them feel isolated from others in the workplace.
It is important that employers approach disabilities with caution and with understanding of their employees’ needs. People have the right to ask their employers for reasonable accommodations when they have a disability that might limit what they can do in their job without accommodations.
The employer in this case claims the former employee never told the restaurant about the illness and then wasn’t able to perform the duties of the job, which is why he was fired. According to the wrongful termination lawsuit filed against the Los Angeles restaurant, the man brought a doctor’s note to the management and asked them for some accommodations. He took one week off of work, which seemed reasonable, to adjust to taking his medications after his diagnosis.
If someone is wrongfully terminated, it might be helpful to speak with an employment law attorney who can help them understand their rights and pursue options.
Source: Los Angeles Times, “Suit alleges the Ivy fired employee diagnosed with HIV,” March 29, 2012