American Apparel Settles EEOC Disability Discrimination Lawsuit for $60K
January 3, 2012
In a recent Santa Ana labor and employment lawyers blog, Howard Law attorney Vincent Howard discussed a series of lawsuits filed against the popular Los Angeles, California-based retailer American Apparel, a manufacturing company that employs thousands of workers in the Los Angeles production facility, and in retail stores throughout the country.
In related news that our Riverside labor and employment attorneys have been following, American Apparel has agreed to settle a U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission-filed (EEOC) disability discrimination lawsuit for $60,000, after the retail company was found to have violated federal labor laws for disability discrimination.
According to the EEOC lawsuit, American Apparel violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by firing a garment worker while he was on disability leave, failing to accommodate him based on his disability.
The EEOC and American Apparel have reportedly worked over an extended period of time to settle this case, and recently arrived on a three-year consent decree--whereupon American Apparel will adopt a comprehensive ADA policy, will agree to provide the retailer's managers and supervisors with ADA training, will ensure that workers are informed as to their rights under the ADA and how to seek ADA accommodations, and will designate an ADA coordinator in order to oversee the implementation of the decree.
Under the disability discrimination settlement, the fired garment worker will receive $40,000, and the company will spend the following $20,000 of the $60,000 settlement in order to sponsor two seminars in coordination with Los Angeles-based non-profits that will focus on the rights of workers along with the responsibilities employers have under the ADA.
As our Irvine labor and employment attorney blog author Vincent Howard has recently discussed, under the ADA, discriminating against disabled workers is against the law, and federal law mandates that all employers are required to reasonably accommodate disabled job applicants and employees, unless doing so would cause hardship or major expense for the employer. The EEOC states that the cost of reasonable accommodation is often minimal, and can provide great benefits to both employers and employees.
According to the EEOC's Los Angeles District Director, disabled employees can be extremely productive and creative, as long as employers properly handle requests for reasonable accommodation, allowing the employees their legally entitled right to flourish in the workplace.
In Carson, Corona, and Garden Grove, California, call our labor and employment attorney Vincent Howard at Howard Law, PC today. Contact us toll-free at 1-800-872-5925.
American Apparel Agrees to Settle EEOC Disability Bias Suit for $60,000, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, December 19, 2012
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