EEOC Latex Disability Lawsuit Settled--John Muir Pays Workers $340K
March 17, 2011
A recent California disability discrimination lawsuit settlement has been recently reached between John Muir Health and eight health care workers, after the California health care system agreed to pay the workers $340,000 to settle the disability discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
Our Irvine, California employment attorneys have been following the original lawsuit, filed by the EEOC, where John Muir was accused of failing to offer jobs to one lab technician and seven nurses based on employment disability restrictions that were decided by independent doctors. The John Muir reportedly hired the doctors to perform pre-employment health screenings on the eight interviewees, and assumed that the workers had latex allergies that were life-threatening, and therefore could not safely work in hospital settings.
A few of the workers reportedly received independent evaluations by allergists, all of whom were board-certified, who found that the employees did not have allergies or sensitivities that would prevent them from working in hospital settings safely. All of the interviewees have gone on to work in the hospital and healthcare industry.
According to the EEOC, excluding job candidates from employment based on unfounded fears violates the Americans With Disabilities Act--stating that all job candidates cannot be excluded from employment based on a disability or perceived disability. Instead of withdrawing the job offers, the EEOC claimed in the lawsuit that the candidates should have been provided with latex substitutes that were readily available in gloves and hospital equipment.
John Muir will reportedly revise its employment policies to make sure that safeguards are in place to prevent disability discrimination based on latex-related allergies and sensitivities in the future. John Muir employment candidates with latex sensitivities will now receive an evaluation by allergists to decide what work restrictions would be appropriate, if any. Healthcare staff training on latex allergies and sensitivities will also reportedly be provided by the company.
In Huntington Beach, Fullerton, Irvine, Garden Grove, Costa Mesa, and other cities in Orange County, California, contact Howard Law, PC today for questions about your employment rights.
John Muir Health Settles EEOC Disability Lawsuit, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, March 16, 2011
Workers denied jobs over latex allergy settle case, San Francisco Chronicle, March 17, 2011
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Jewel-Osco Agrees to Pay $3.2 Million in EEOC Disability Discrimination Lawsuit, California Employment Lawyer Blog, January 6, 2011
DOJ Disability Discrimination Lawsuit Against Ventura County Resolved, California Employment Lawyer Blog, August 14, 2010