HR Solutions Company Fired Employee Because of Mental Disabilities, Federal Agency Charges
HOUSTON - G&A OutSourcing, Inc. doing business as G&A Partners, a Houston-based professional employer organization that provides human resources services, violated federal law by firing a new employee the day after she disclosed that she had mental health impairments, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit it filed on Sept. 27.
The EEOC's lawsuit charges that on the first day of her employment, the employee disclosed to her supervisor that she had major depressive disorder (MDD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The following morning, the employee was terminated because of those conditions, the EEOC says.
Such alleged conduct violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The EEOC filed suit (Civil Action No. 4:19-cv-03700) against G&A OutSourcing, Inc. d/b/a G&A Partners in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division, after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process. The EEOC seeks an injunction prohibiting such actions in the future, as well as back pay with pre-judgment interest, and compensatory damages, in amounts to be determined at trial.
"An employee must be safe from termination when honestly disclosing disabilities to a new employer and discussing possible accommodations," said Rayford O. Irvin, district director of the EEOC's Houston District Office. "Employees with mental impairments, such as those with physical impairments, cannot be deprived of equal opportunities in the workplace afforded to all Americans."
Rudy Sustaita, the EEOC's regional attorney in Houston, explained, "A new employee should not have her employment cut short because she tells her employer that she has a disability of any kind. Such an employee is protected from discrimination by the ADA, and the EEOC is here to enforce that statute."
The EEOC's senior trial attorney in charge of the case, Connie Gatlin, added, "Situations like this are the reason Congress passed the ADA. They say honesty is the best policy - so it shouldn't be a cause for losing your job."
According to the company's website, the human resources services offered by G&A Partners to its corporate clients include HR solutions, workplace safety measures, provision and administration of benefits, payroll administration, and assistance with HR technology.
The EEOC's Houston District Office is located on the sixth floor of the Leland Federal Building at 1919 Smith St. in Houston.
The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov. Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.