Company to Pay $85,000 over Rejected Applicant
Leetsdale-based manufacturer Hussey Copper will pay $85,000 for turning away a job applicant based on his participation in a drug treatment program, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently announced.
According to the EEOC, Hussey offered a production laborer position to a job applicant conditioned on his passing a physical examination. During the examination, Hussey’s physician learned that the applicant was receiving methadone as part of a clinically supervised chemical dependency treatment program. The EEOC contended that the applicant was qualified for the position and was not experiencing adverse side effects from the methadone treatments. In addition, the treatment program reportedly provided the company’s doctor with information verifying the applicant’s successful and compliant participation in the program. The company nonetheless rescinded the job offer, mistakenly concluding that the applicant was a safety risk due to his methadone treatments, the EEOC said.
“Methadone treatment is one of the most monitored and regulated medical treatments in the United States,” said Spencer Lewis, Jr. district director of the EEOC’s Philadelphia District Office. “This case should remind all employers that the ADA requires employers to make individualized assessments about an individual’s ability to do the job instead of acting out of speculative fears or biases.”
The company agreed to settle the case after a 3-day non-jury trial in federal court. In addition to the monetary damages, Hussey Copper agreed to hire the applicant as a mason utility laborer. Hussey further agreed to refrain from future discrimination, revise its discrimination policies, and provide antidiscrimination training.
original link http://hr.blr.com/HR-news/Discrimination/Disabilities-ADA/Company-to-Pay-85000-over-Rejected-Applicant/
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