Tyson Foods Reach Settlement in EEOC Disability Discrimination Lawsuit

February 27, 2012 by Jim Higgins

In Tennessee and all across the country it is against the Americans with Disabilities Act not to hire an employee because of a disability. However, many companies and businesses still find ways around this law and discriminate against employees with disabilities by not hiring them or not making reasonable accommodations for them. If you or someone you care about has been discriminated against at the workplace due to a disability, then you should speak with a Tennessee employment ADA lawyer right away. They will work with you to make sure you get the compensation you are entitled to for the discrimination you have suffered.

In this case, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or EEOC filed a lawsuit against Tyson Foods Inc in May of 2010, claiming that the company failed to hire Mark White for a maintenance position because he had epilepsy. The EEOC claimed that when Tyson refused to hire White that they violated the Americans with Disabilities Act or ADA.

The lawsuit claims that White’s epilepsy was controlled by medication and had been for the last twelve years and that he had been a previous employee for Tyson two times during this period. The Tyson Company introduced a new medical assessment procedure since the last the last time they hired White and they refused to hire him again because he failed to pass a medical evaluation required for applicants with epilepsy in order to determine whether or not he could safely perform the job.

According to the lawsuit, the doctor who performed the evaluation did not examine White but relied on outdated medical research to determine that he could not safely perform the job. During this time, Tyson also employed other employees with epilepsy who were grandfathered in.

Tyson Foods Inc has agreed to pay $35,000 to settle the disability discrimination lawsuit. In addition to paying the $35,000, Tyson agreed to introduce a new assessment procedure for similar cases. This means that an applicant who is disqualified from Tyson’s employment because of the medical assessment will have the right to a second medical assessment at the applicant’s expense. An independent and third medical assessment will also be made for any applicant not hired after the second assessment. The settlement also provides injunctive relief, including training to individuals involved in the assessment procedure, as well as posting notices for employees and complying with and reporting to the EEOC.

Cases just like this one happen all too often to employees all across the country and also to the employees of Tennessee. If you or someone you work with has been discriminated against due to a disability, then we strongly recommend that you contact one of our compassionate and experienced Tennessee employment ADA attorneys immediately. We care about our clients and will work with you to make sure you receive the compensation you are entitled to by law.

Contact us online or call us at 800.705.2121 to set up a FREE consultation to discuss your legal options.