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Thursday, September 19, 2019

Florida staffing agency to change business practices after disability lawsuit

By Mark Iandolo | Sep 7, 2017

TAMPA, Fla. (Legal Newsline) — The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission announced Aug. 28 that KB Staffing LLC, a staffing firm in central Florida, has agreed to create a class damages fund and furnish other relief after allegations of unlawful pre-offer health inquiries of applicants.

"Congress recognized that prohibiting pre-offer medical inquiries was necessary to prevent applicants from being subjected to harmful and unfounded stereotypes on the basis of an actual or perceived disability," said EEOC regional attorney Robert Weisberg. 

"As staffing agencies now play a large role in our nation's workforce, eliminating any discrimination in their screening practices is increasingly important to ensuring that workers with disabilities have equal access to work opportunities."

From 2011 to 2013, KB Staffing allegedly asked all applicants to complete a paper application package; this package had a medical questionnaire that asked sensitive health information, including disability-related questions.

"As a result of this resolution, applicants in central Florida should have less concern that their employer will improperly collect and potentially use sensitive and private medical information, unfairly excluding them from jobs they can readily perform with or without accommodation,” said EEOC Tampa field director Evangeline Hawthorne.

The EEOC's Miami District Office oversees agency operations in Florida, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission