OATH Administrative Law Judge Christine Stecura recommended an agency engage with its employee in a cooperative dialogue to discuss potential accommodations for the employee’s disability.
In a Civil Service Law Section 72 proceeding regarding the employee’s fitness to perform her duties, Judge Stecura found the agency established that the employee has a disability which rendered her unfit to perform her duties when working physically in the office.
The ALJ found the employee had requested a reasonable accommodation to work from home and the agency failed to engage in a cooperative dialogue with her to determine if her disability could be reasonably accommodated by employee working at home.
The ALJ also found the agency failed to establish that it had probable cause to place the employee on one of two emergency leaves and recommended restoration of salary or leave balance to the employee for that period of emergency leave.
Click HERE to access Judge Stecura's findings and recommendations posted on the Internet.
Inability to perform the duties of the position
OATH Administrative Law Judge Julia Davis recommended dismissal of disciplinary charges filed against an employee she found suffered a disability that resulted in frequent outbursts at work, interfered with her ability to interact with colleagues and supervisors, prevented her from completing the training required for her position, and resulted in other disruptive behavior at work.
Judge Davis indicated that disciplinary penalties cannot be imposed "if the alleged acts of misconduct were caused by a disability."
Finding the employee has neither acknowledged her issues nor sought help and there is no present possibility that her medical condition will improve, the ALJ recommended placing the employee on an involuntary leave of absence as the employee’s disability renders her "unable to perform the functions of her job".
Click HERE to access Judge Davis' findings and recommendations posted on the Internet.