Authored By: Elizabeth Kapamas
Remote work has rapidly evolved to become a standard company practice due to COVID-19's pandemic. Slowly as the threat of the virus begins to settle, business employees have begun to integrate back into offices. Some employees, with a work-on-site history, have made requests to continue working remotely to accommodate having a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
EEOC filed its first lawsuit alleging discrimination against an employee who was terminated for her request in wanting to continue working from home because of her condition making her vulnerable and at high risk of contracting the COVID-19 virus.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission writes,
"This case represents the first lawsuit the EEOC has filed about a request for an ADA accommodation related to COVID-19.
“The ADA requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities to ensure those with disabilities have an equal opportunity to work to their full ability,” said Marcus G. Keegan, regional attorney for the EEOC’s Atlanta District Office. “Denying a reasonable accommodation and terminating an employee because of her disability clearly violates the ADA at any time. In light of the additional risks to health and safety created by COVID-19, it is particularly concerning that an employer would take this action several months into a global pandemic.”
Darrell Graham, district director of the Atlanta office, said, “The EEOC is committed to enforcing the ADA to protect the rights of such aggrieved employees."
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