Lisa Cristia worked as a massage therapist and later as a department manager for Red Door Spa in Chicago. In 2003, Cristia received her first
A few months after her promotion, Cristia was diagnosed with cancer and took several leaves of absence to undergo treatment. After each leave, she returned to the same job and pay as before.
In her next performance evaluation, Cristia again was counseled about her professionalism, including discussing intimate details of her personal life with staff.
Several months later, Cristia held a birthday party. When a subordinate didn’t show up, Cristia called her at home to ask why. Another employee who came but left early received a phone message from Cristia calling the employee “rude, cruel and selfish.”
When the employees complained, Red Door fired Cristia for breaching the company’s rules of conduct, including using her position as a manager to coerce and harass employees. Cristia sued, alleging disability discrimination.
The court ruled in favor of Red Door, noting the company merely followed its written policies for termination for breaking the conduct rules. It said since Red Door had fully complied with the FMLA during Cristia’s illness, there was no discrimination.
- How to Fire an Employee the Legal Way: 6 Termination Guidelines
- 10 Secrets to an Effective Performance Review
- Slow business forces RIF? Most staffing decisions won't trigger bias liability
- Homeland Security's Miami office to pay $2.5 million in bias lawsuit
- Job Descriptions
- San Francisco janitors reach accord to end bias suit