A federal contractor Camber Corporation has agreed to pay $100,000 and furnish other relief to settle a disability and age discrimination lawsuit against an Indian American, filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced in a press release.
The EEOC charged that Camber Corporation violated federal law when it denied employee Ashok Pai a transfer based on his son’s medical condition and then fired him, replacing him with someone more than 20 years younger.
According to the EEOC, when he was a child, Pai’s son had sustained major injuries in a car accident and as a result, has been disabled for more than 25 years.
Pai sought a transfer to work nearer to where his son lived and requested leave to assist with his care.
Upon receiving this information, Camber classified Pai as “resigned” and began processing termination paperwork, firing him for pretextual reasons.
Camber then replaced Pai, who was then in his mid-60s, with a much younger worker.
According to the press release, such alleged behavior violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA).
In addition to a $100,000 award for lost wages, the two-year decree includes injunctive relief to prevent disability and age discrimination from occurring at the company in the future.
The decree requires continued annual training on the protections of the ADA and ADEA, including the ADA provision barring employers from discriminating against workers because of their association with disabled persons.
The company must also post anti-discrimination notices at its Huntsville, Ala., and Fairfax, Va., locations.
“The ADA not only prohibits employers from discriminating against people with disabilities, it also bans discrimination against employees and applicants based on their association with a person with a disability — for good reasons. Mr. Pai simply asked for a transfer to help deal with his son’s severe disability, and the company made a bad situation worse by punishing him for trying to do the right thing and showing age bias at the same time. The EEOC is here to fight for the rights of people like Ashok Pai,” Washington Field Office Acting Director Mindy Weinstein, quoted in a press release.
“When employers violate the law, the EEOC will hold them accountable. We are pleased that the parties were able to reach a resolution to better protect the rights of employees under federal law,” EEOC Regional Attorney Debra M. Lawrence added.