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False arrest can be retaliation

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in Firing,Human Resources

It’s almost always a bad idea to make an example out of a terminated employee.

Recent case: William was hired after revealing he had diabetes, and wound up missing work to treat foot problems related to the condition. When, after returning to work, he told a supervisor he had to leave early because his foot hurt, he allegedly was told that if he left, he would be fired. He did and he was.

William filed an EEOC complaint—and was picked up on theft charges on his way to an EEOC conciliation meeting. He alleged that the charges were false and that his former em­­ployer had tipped the police off that he would be outside the office.

That, according to the court, was enough to send a retaliation claim to trial. (Rivera v. Balter Sales, No. 14-CV-1205, SD NY, 2014)

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