New Suits Allege Disability, Sex Discrimination Against Transgender Applicant, Sexual Harassment, and Retaliation

October 09, 2017

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) continues to announce new lawsuits that were filed at the end of its fiscal year, including the following, which allege unrelated instances of purported disability and sex discrimination, as well as sexual harassment and retaliation.

EEOC v Triton, Inc, SDCalif, case number: 3:17-cv-02004-BAS-KSC: The Carlsbad, California-based company violated the ADA when it failed to accommodate an employee with a disability who needed medical attention and a leave of absence, failed to properly engage in the interactive process, and instead fired her, according to the EEOC.

EEOC v Halo Unlimited, Inc dba Infant Hearing Screening Specialists, SDCalif., case number 3:17-cv-02006-H-WVG: The EEOC contends that the Corona, California-based company violated the ADA by denying a pregnant employee a disability accommodation and firing her within days of learning of her disability.

EEOC v Jacksons Food Stores, Inc, d/b/a Jackson Energy, DIdaho, case number 1:17-CV-00407-REB: Jackson Energy, a division of Jacksons Food Stores, ran afoul of the ADA by refusing to accommodate a worker recovering from wrist surgery and terminating her because of her disability, the EEOC asserts. The agency also sued the company for disability discrimination last month. In this most recent suit, the employee allegedly returned to work on light duty a week after wrist surgery and trained a colleague on her regular duties. A few weeks later, the company purportedly forced the employee to go on unpaid medical leave until she could return to work without any restrictions, ignoring her requests for an accommodation, such as speech recognition software, that potentially would have allowed her to continue to perform her dispatcher duties, and instead they fired her when she exhausted her FMLA leave before making a full recovery.

EEOC v A&E Tire, Inc, DColo, case number 1:17cv-02362-STV: The Colorado chain of automotive service shops violated Title VII by retracting a job offer and refusing to hire a male applicant once it was discovered that he was transgender, according to the EEOC. The applicant was offered a services manager position pending a drug test and background check. In the background screening paperwork the applicant identified his assigned sex at birth and indicated he used another name typically associated with the female sex in the past. Less than an hour after A&E Tire extended the job offer, the applicant allegedly received a call from a manager asking him if there was a mistake in his paperwork. When the applicant said there was not, A&E never got back to him about completing the screenings or a start date and ultimately hired someone else for the position, the EEOC said.

EEOC v Price Ventures, LLC dba La Fiesta Fresh Mexican Grill and Cantina, WDVa, case number 1:17-cv-00041-JPJ-PMS: The EEOC asserts that the Bluefield, Virginia, restaurant violated Title VII when it subjected a female employee to a sexually hostile work environment and retaliated against her by reducing her hours. The 18-year-old hostess was purportedly subjected to unwelcome sexual comments and touching by a significantly older male manager who had allegedly engaged in similar conduct with at least one other female employee. La Fiesta, which did not have a sexual harassment policy or employee complaint procedures in effect, reduced the hostess’ hours when she reported the harassment to the general manager, the EEOC said. The wife of the alleged harasser purportedly was responsible for scheduling the hostess’ hours after she reported the harassment.