UPS Policies Violate ADA, Workers Charge
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
September 10, 2004
PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA--A group of workers at United Parcel Service Inc. have filed a lawsuit claiming the world's largest package-delivery service discriminates against them in violation of the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act.
Attorneys with the law firm Scott & Scott LLC, which is filing the suit, are seeking class action status, which they say could effect tens of thousands of employees and cost UPS millions of dollars.
The suit was filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh, against the Atlanta-based company.
According to Bloomberg and Reuters news services, the suit alleges, among other things, that UPS requires workers returning from a medical leave of absence to first provide a "full" medical release. Employees that experience permanent disabilities are not allowed to come back to a job which could be made to accommodate their disabilities.
The plaintiffs also claim the company fails to determine what work the employees can do, instead conducting what they call "sham" investigations that lead directly to determinations that the person simply cannot work.
The plaintiffs want the court to stop UPS from violating the ADA, and require it to adopt new policies that prohibit discrimination based on disability.
"This case is about protecting workers' federally recognized rights and ensuring that injured workers have a job to return to," Anita Laing, a lawyer for Scott & Scott, said in a statement.
A UPS spokesman told Bloomberg the company does not require workers to be able to perform 100 percent of their jobs before they are allowed to resume work. Instead, Malcolm Berkley said, the company requires workers to perform just the essential functions of a job.
Last month, a separate legal team, lead by the American Association for People with Disabilities, filed a different discrimination lawsuit against UPS.
In that case, AAPD claimed the company has illegally terminated hundreds of employees because it did not approve of their prescription medications.
"Class Action Filed Against UPS for 'Playing Doctor'" -- August 23, 2004 (Ragged Edge Magazine)