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EEOC targets Grisham Farm Products' alleged discrimination

By Mark Iandolo | Mar 25, 2016

ST. LOUIS (Legal Newsline) — The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has charged Grisham Farm Products Inc. with discrimination violations.

Philip Sullivan, a retired law enforcement officer, sought employment with Grisham Farm Products. The company asked him to fill out a three-page health history form before it would consider him for the position, according to allegations. This alleged paperwork could cause an applicant to identify himself or herself as a person with a disability, making it a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

"Job applicants cannot be required to provide employers with their medical history prior to receiving a job offer," said James R. Neely Jr., director of EEOC's St. Louis District Office. "Grisham Farm Products' intrusive health history form is among the most egregious we have seen."

EEOC will seek monetary relief for Sullivan and an order to force Grisham Farm Products to institute policies to prevent discrimination.

"The ADA and GINA are intended to protect both employees and job applicants from unlawful discrimination,” said Andrea G. Baran, EEOC's regional attorney in St. Louis. “When companies require applicants to reveal their health history, it not only discourages some individuals, like Mr. Sullivan, from applying, it also allows employers to consider illegal factors in their employment decisions. As such, enforcement of these laws is critically important to a discrimination-free workplace."

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