An Indiana based employer is being sued because it allegedly discriminated against an employee suffering from post-partum depression. In essence, what is being alleged is an employer discriminating based upon disability by refusing to provide a reasonable accommodation for the employee concerning her condition. Instead, the employer allegedly fired the employee due to her disability.
Conduct such as this is in violation of the American with Disabilities Act (ADA). The alleged actions of the company have now resulted in a lawsuit scheduled to be heard in federal court. The lawsuit was filed on December 23rd.
This case demonstrates the benefits of litigation when it comes to employment related disputes. Attorneys experienced in the area of workplace discrimination are familiar with what conduct should and should not be tolerated at the workplace and can often force businesses to make changes that will prevent such discrimination from taking place. Competent counsel familiar with constitutional issues and experienced in trying discrimination claims is often required to insure that employment discrimination does not occur.
Discrimination will continue as long as attitudes in the workplace have not kept pace with notions of fairness or equal treatment. Though the ADA has long since been placed into law, employers still ignore such provisions. This may be in part due to the way business was conducted in the past, but it also shows an inability to grasp the notion that discrimination of any kind cannot be tolerated in the workplace.
Though discrimination claims will likely always be with us, at least some employees are fighting back to hold perpetrators of such conduct accountable.
Source: Job Mouse, "EEOC Sues Midwest ISO for Firing Employee Suffering from Post-Partum Depression," by Anneline Waldman, Dec. 27, 2011