Friday, June 26, 2009

U.S. EEOC sues Kmart for an ADA violation


The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has sued Kmart Corp. for discrimination, alleging the retailer violated the Americans with Disabilities Act by terminating an employee who has spinal stenosis.

The EEOC alleges that Kmart fired Alonzo McGlone - who suffers from the condition in which one or more areas of the spine narrows, often putting pressure on the spinal cord or nerves - because of his disability. The group also said the Kmart discount store, located in Norfolk, Va., refused to allow McGlone to use an "assistive device" to aid him in standing and walking.

The EEOC said McGlone was qualified for and could perform the duties of his position as a greeter.

Kmart is owned by Sears Holdings Corp. (SHLD).

The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in Virginia, seeks unspecified damages including reinstatement to the job or pay in lieu of employment. It also seeks punitive damages for pain and suffering.

This isn't the first time Kmart has been sued by the EEOC. The company paid $ 60,000 in 2004 to settle a job-discrimination lawsuit filed on behalf of a mentally disabled Kansas man.

Sears Holdings' shares were recently up 2.6% at $64.28.