"The Starbucks Coffee Company has paid $75,000 to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to settle a lawsuit for unlawfully denying a
reasonable accommodation to a woman with dwarfism, according to a press release.
The lawsuit was filed by the commission on behalf of Elsa Sallard, who claimed she was fired from her job as a barista because she is a dwarf.
According to a press release from the commission, Sallard told employers during a training that she could use a stool or stepladder to do her job.
"The manager at the El Paso Starbucks location disregarded Sallard's request," the release said. "On the same day that Sallard requested the
accommodation, Starbucks terminated her employment, claiming that she would pose a 'danger' to customers and employees."
Commission officials said that the settlement not only compensates Sallard, but is an agreement that Starbucks will provide training in compliance
with Americans With Disabilities Act."
This is the kind of nonsense that degrades the competetiveness of US business. The woman should never have been hired in the first place as it is
clearly a safety issue to have someone on a ladder handling hot liquids and the pace of work behind the counter of a Starbucks clearly would place a
store with a person handicapped in this manner at a competetive disadvantage in terms of speed of service and general quality of service.
Starbucks should have fought this case. They likely would have lost, but they should have fought the case. They should also fire the idiot who
hired the dwarf in the first place. Having a person carry a step ladder around to the various stations behind the counter in a coffee shop is not a
reasonable accomodation. She likely would have sued if denied a position, but that is certainly a better position to be in for Starbucks than firing
her for being a dwarf. She obviously did not shrink her first day on the job.
I've dealt with the EEOC on a number of employment issues over the years and they are like the KGB. Assuming that you are wrong, that the person
filing suit is in the right, that you are guilty from onset. Their operating methods are absolutely contrary to our basic system of justice where
you are presumed innocent.
Fortunately my firm has a policy to never settle and I did not lose a case, but hundreds of hours and significant legal fees were dedicated to these
Just one more example of how the federal government destroys competetiveness, decreases margins and hurts companies.
edit on 18-8-2011 by dolphinfan because: (no reason given)