Tuesday, September 13, 2016

From the LawBlogs


From the LawBlogs
Selected Employment Law News
[From Wolters Kluwer WorkDay http://www.employmentlawdaily.com/]

[Internet links highlighted in color]

Lifting restrictions and job performance
By Marjorie Johnson, J.D.

A jury will decide whether Nestle violated the ADA when it rejected the proposed accommodation of an employee with lifting restrictions and eventually terminated him due to his inability to perform his merchandise-handling duties, a federal court in Michigan ruled in denying summary judgment against his claims in part. Triable issues existed as to whether lifting heavy units was an essential job function, whether it would be reasonable to accommodate him by allowing him to take products out of large boxes and transfer them through use of a cart, and whether allowing him to do so would pose an undue hardship. However, his bid for punitive damages was tossed (Hann v. Nestle USA, Inc..).

Ms. Johnson’s analysis of the action is posted on the Internet at:

© 2016 CCH Incorporated. All rights reserved. The foregoing summary is reprinted with permission. This article was published in Wolters Kluwer Daily Reporting Suite on September 12, 2016. For more information, please click here [http://www.dailyreportingsuite.com/files/DailiesReprintPermissionsAfter7Days.pdf]


Employee with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder contends he is able to safely perform the duties of his or her position
By Dave Strausfeld, J.D.

A metropolitan transit authority bus mechanic, proceeding pro se, survived summary judgment on his claim he was discriminated against based on his Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder [ADHD] when he was fired from his job after some on-the-job accidents, held a federal district court in the District of Columbia. The evidence suggested his accidents occurred during the time the transit authority barred him from taking Adderall in the belief that his commercial driver’s license (CDL) would not allow it. Because a reasonable factfinder could determine that he could perform his job safely while taking Adderall, his Rehab Act discrimination claim could proceed to trial. But his defamation claims against several individual coworkers did not survive (McFadden v. Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority).

Mr. Strausfeld’s analysis of the action is posted on the Internet at:

© 2016 CCH Incorporated. All rights reserved. The foregoing summary is reprinted with permission. This article was published in Wolters Kluwer Daily Reporting Suite on September 12, 2016. For more information, please click here [http://www.dailyreportingsuite.com/files/DailiesReprintPermissionsAfter7Days.pdf]


Reassigning and then terminating an employee after alleging mistreatment by the supervisor
By Deborah Hammonds, J.D.

A senior HR analyst who claimed she was transferred and later fired because she complained of being mistreated by her supervisor was allowed to proceed with her ADA, FMLA, and state law claims after a federal district court in Connecticut denied her employer’s motion for summary judgment (Szestakow v Metropolitan District Commission).

Ms. Hammonds analysis of the action is posted on the Internet at:

© 2016 CCH Incorporated. All rights reserved. The foregoing summary is reprinted with permission. This article was published in Wolters Kluwer Daily Reporting Suite on September 12, 2016. For more information, please click here [http://www.dailyreportingsuite.com/files/DailiesReprintPermissionsAfter7Days.pdf]


Foreign agricultural workers’ claims revived by the USCA, 3rd Circuit

For nearly 25 years, foreign agricultural workers have been trying to get a court to hear the merits of their claim they were made ill by the pesticides used at Dole Food Co farms. The Second Circuit, muddling through the “byzantine procedural developments” that have marked the workers’ journey through several different courts, breathed new life into the litigation in a lengthy en banc decision. “As these cases come to us today, there is a serious possibility that no court will ever reach the merits of the plaintiffs’ claims,” the appeals court wrote. “More than twenty years after this litigation began, we think that outcome is untenable—both as a matter of basic fairness and pursuant to the legal principles that govern this procedurally complex appeal.” Chagrined that the plaintiffs here “have been knocking on courthouse doors all over the country and, indeed, the world, only for those doors to remain closed,” the appeals court vacated an order by a federal district court in Delaware dismissing the claims, and remanded for further proceedings (Chavez v. Dole Food Co., Inc.).

Ms. Milam-Perez’s analysis of the action is posted on the Internet at:

© 2016 CCH Incorporated. All rights reserved. The foregoing summary is reprinted with permission. This article was published in Wolters Kluwer Daily Reporting Suite on September 12, 2016. For more information, please click here [http://www.dailyreportingsuite.com/files/DailiesReprintPermissionsAfter7Days.pdf]


Employer’s “neutral assessment” of employee during a reduction in force alleged to be pretext for retaliation for employee’s using FMLA leave
By Marjorie Johnson, J.D.

A decisionmaker’s ostensibly neutral assessment of an employee during a company-wide reduction-in-force [RIF] that led to his termination may have been pretext for retaliating against him for using an abundance of intermittent FMLA leave to care for his ailing parents, and his employer may have also interfered with his rights by using his leave as a negative factor. Partially denying summary judgment against the employee on his FMLA retaliation and interference claims, a federal district court in Connecticut also held that his temporary transfer to a non-supervisory position was not an adverse action since, at the HR manager’s recommendation, he was swiftly put back in a supervisory role and received no loss in compensation (Gaydos v. Sikorsky Aircraft, Inc.).

Ms. Johnson’s analysis of the action posted on the Internet at:

© 2016 CCH Incorporated. All rights reserved. The foregoing summary is reprinted with permission. This article was published in Wolters Kluwer Daily Reporting Suite on September 12, 2016. For more information, please click here [http://www.dailyreportingsuite.com/files/DailiesReprintPermissionsAfter7Days.pdf]


Employee files Title VII claim alleging she was terminated for not going to church
By Deborah Hammonds, J.D.

An employee who claimed she was fired from the Kansas Secretary of State’s office because she did not go to church could proceed with most of her Title VII claims based largely on remarks made to her grandmother by the Assistant Secretary of State about why the employee was terminated. However, her Title VII claim against the Assistant Secretary of State in his official capacity, as well as her Section 1983 and state law claims, were dismissed because of Eleventh Amendment immunity (Canfield v. Office of the Secretary of State for the State of Kansas).

Ms. Hammonds’ analysis of the action is posted on the Internet at:

© 2016 CCH Incorporated. All rights reserved. The foregoing summary is reprinted with permission. This article was published in Wolters Kluwer Daily Reporting Suite on September 12, 2016. For more information, please click here [http://www.dailyreportingsuite.com/files/DailiesReprintPermissionsAfter7Days.pdf]

Handbooks focusing on State and Municipal Public Personnel Law continue to be available for purchase via the links provided below:

The Discipline Book at http://thedisciplinebook.blogspot.com/

Challenging Adverse Personnel Decisions at http://nypplarchives.blogspot.com

The Disability Benefits E-book: at http://section207.blogspot.com/

Layoff, Preferred Lists at http://nylayoff.blogspot.com/

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