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EEOC sues FedEx contractor for firing driver after lupus flare-up

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The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has filed a lawsuit against a logistics company for allegedly firing a driver who suffered a lupus flare-up.

In May 2024, the EEOC announced that a lawsuit was filed against Lubin Logistics Company, which operates as a package delivery contractor for FedEx. The lawsuit claims that Lubin Logistics illegally discriminated against a driver due to his disability, violating the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

According to the EEOC, a worker was hired by Lubin Logistics as a delivery driver in November 2021. At the time of the hiring, the driver informed the company that he suffered from the sometimes painful auto-immune disease lupus.

The worker was trained as a “jumper,” a worker who delivers packages out of a truck driven by another driver.

Two weeks later, “the employee was assigned to a Lubin Logistics truck without a working door, working heating system, or functional passenger seat. The employee suffered a rare lupus “flare-up,” causing severe pain in his legs and feet. The employee requested and received permission to return to the delivery terminal prior to the end of his shift,” officials said.

Before his next shift started, the worker reportedly received a text message informing him that he was terminated due to his medical condition. The worker said that he could still perform his delivery driver duties, or offered to work as a package loader, but he was still fired, officials say.

“The ADA prohibits the termination of an employee because of a disability, actual or perceived,” said Marcus G. Keegan, regional attorney for the EEOC’s Atlanta District Office. “Additionally, the ADA prohibits employers the termination of an employee because of their request for an accommodation related to a disability. Lubin Logistics violated both rules when it fired an employee because of his medical condition and his one-time request, when he had otherwise been capable of performing the essential functions of his job.”

Darrell Graham, district director of the Atlanta office, said, “Employees have a right to be evaluated based on their ability to perform the essential functions of their job — not based on their medical conditions or their requests for reasonable accommodations related to those conditions. The EEOC is committed to enforcing the ADA to protect the rights of employees with disabilities.”

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