DETROIT (Legal Newsline) — The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has announced Neenah Paper Inc. has agreed to pay $33,000 to resolve allegations it violated the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Neenah Paper allegedly refused to allow Kristoffer Gauthier to return to his job on the production floor after he had a seizure. Gauthier’s seizure came at work and he proceeded to take disability leave. According to the lawsuit, Gauthier’s doctor later cleared him to return to work but Neenah Paper refused to let him return until after a physician could confirm that he no longer had a seizure disorder. After months he was finally able to return but allegedly had to take medication at work under supervision.
"We believe this case exemplifies the spirit of the Americans with Disabilities Act," said Omar Weaver, senior trial attorney for EEOC's Detroit field office. "An employer cannot single out an employee who has a disability and impose a unique and overprotective rule on that person as a condition of employment."
In addition to monetary relief that will go to Gauthier, the consent decree prohibits Neenah Paper from engaging in similar discrimination in the future. Additionally, the company must train its managers on disability discrimination and reasonable accommodation.