AT&T Accused of Discriminating against Insulin-dependent Applicant

September 28, 2009 ( - AT&T, doing business as Southwestern Bell Telephone Company, L.P. (AT&T), violated federal law by refusing to hire an applicant simply because he is an insulin-dependent diabetic, a lawsuit charged.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) claims that the employer violated the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) by failing to hire an applicant as a cable splicer technician in Austin only because of his insulin use for type 2 diabetes.

According to the EEOC, the applicant indisputably had the necessary experience and expertise to perform the job, and had previously safely performed a similar job for AT&T for many years after he was diagnosed with diabetes.

The EEOC said it filed suit after first trying to work out a voluntary settlement.

“Hiring decisions should be based on an applicant’s qualifications and not on myths, fears and stereotypes about actual or perceived disabilities related to diabetes and insulin use,” said Senior Trial Attorney Eduardo Juarez of the EEOC’s San Antonio Field Office, in the news release.