The federal Transportation Security Administration has settled a lawsuit brought by the national American Civil Liberties Union and its Florida chapter. The ACLU filed an administrative complaint on behalf of HIV-positive Air Force veteran Michael Lamarre, who was rejected for a job as a transportation security officer because of his HIV status.
The TSA had requested a medical examination, and Lamarre’s doctor provided documentation that he could perform the job without any accommodations. Lamarre claims the TSA told him his condition made him more susceptible to colds and viruses and that it was rejecting him for his own good.
Under the settlement, the TSA agrees to review its medical guidelines concerning HIV-positive applicants.
Note: This case highlights the problems with rigid policies concerning employee disabilities. The ADA requires employers to conduct an individualized assessment of the employee’s condition.
- Document all disciplinary actions, including why and when you decided to act
- Just having a condition doesn't confer ADA protection
- Employee can sue for legal fees after winning EEOC claim
- Do your hiring tests simulate true working conditions?
- No need to investigate harassment complaints clearly not covered by anti-discrimination laws