A local man has filed a discrimination suit against Duquesne University, alleging that the maintenance department did not hire him because of his speech impediment. Discrimination based on disability status is illegal under federal law. The man filed a complaint with the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission last year and recently received a notice of a right to sue.
The man says that during his interview, he was told that he wouldn't be hired because the job required that he be able to lift 75 pounds. He says that he told the hiring manager that he could lift that weight, and was then told that he needed an unspecified type of license and did not have enough experience to do the job.
The man is represented by Samuel J. Cordes of this firm. Mr. Cordes says that whether or not the man can lift 75 pounds is irrelevant. Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, the employer is required to make reasonable accommodations for disabled persons, which would likely include an accommodation for someone who cannot lift heavy objects. It is not clear if the job actually requires someone to lift 75 pounds or not.
As this case shows, disability discrimination is not always about physical disabilities. Potential employees may be denied a job opportunity for a reason that has no real effect on their ability to do the job. Discrimination in the hiring process is unacceptable and illegal. Everyone deserves an equal opportunity to work in jobs that they are qualified for. If you believe that you have been the victim of disability discrimination, contact an attorney to find out more about your rights.
Source: Duquesne Duke, "Local man files lawsuit against Duquesne," Jordan Power, March 7, 2012.