NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) — The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced a lawsuit July 27 against Regional International Corporation, a commercial truck and trailer dealership with locations in western New York, over allegations of firing an employee who requested leave for hip replacement surgery.
"The ADA has protected disabled employees from workplace discrimination since 1990," said EEOC regional attorney Jeffrey Burstein. "It is disturbing that, in 2017, some employers still believe that Americans with disabilities have no place in their workforce."
According to EEOC, John R. Moore worked as a truck parts delivery driver and requested a short leave for surgery in June 2015. The surgery would treat hip osteoarthritis that had degenerated to the point of bone-on-bone contact. The company allegedly failed to accommodate Moore and decided to fire him instead, despite recent employee reviews in which they had given him “excellent” scores.
"If, instead of firing Mr. Moore, Regional International had allowed him to take reasonable leave, they would have kept an 'exceptional' employee and complied with federal law,” said Kevin Berry, the EEOC's New York District director.
The EEOC seeks lost wages and compensatory and punitive damages for Moore, as well as injunctive relief to prevent Regional International from discriminating against disabled employees in the future.
The EEOC's New York District Office oversees agency operations in New York, northern New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.