Deaf Worker Files Discrimination Suit

May 9, 2005 ( - A deaf worker at the Albertsons Distribution Center in Fort Worth, Texas has filed a lawsuit claiming he was the victim of harassment and discrimination.

According to the federal lawsuit, the EEOC found that Monteleone was subjected to harassment by supervisors and co-workers and was denied transfers because of his disability. The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages against Albertsons and employee Charles Davis.

On some days, co-workers hurled cans of food and bottles of bleach at William Monteleone, according to the Fort Worth Star-telegram, citing a federal lawsuit. The suit also claims that a supervisor sometimes cupped his hand behind his ear, feigning deafness, and yelled directly into Monteleone’s face – and that on a routine basis Charles Davis, a co-worker, would gun the engine on a forklift and drive the machine to a screeching halt near Monteleone.

Monteleone, who is 39, lost his hearing as an infant as a result of an illness. He began working at the Albertsons warehouse in 1991, according to the report. In December 2002, he filed a complaint with the EEOC and received clearance to file suit in December 2004.

Albertsons officials have denied Monteleone’s claims, according to the Star-Telegram report.

Monteleone is still employed by Albertsons, but he suffered a back injury in July 2003 that has forced him to be on leave, according to the lawsuit.