Employee caught in detergent sting loses disability case

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources,Leaders & Managers,Management Training

An inventory manager lost a discrimination lawsuit against the Atlanta Community Food Bank because he failed to meet the ADA’s disability standard. The man suffered an arm injury on the job and returned to work two months later on 20 percent partial disability, which was later raised to 50 percent.

When the manager was subsequently demoted as part of a restructuring of the business, he complained about his reduced pay. Two days later, a customer informed the food bank’s management that the manager had offered to sell her a pallet of detergent for cash. When management asked the customer to agree to the sale, the manager was arrested, cash in hand, and fired.

When the disability case made it to court, the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia, ruled that the manager failed to show that his arm injury substantially limited the major life function of doing manual labor, or that those limits were substantial. As such, he did not qualify as disabled under the ADA.  

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