Disabled Man Wins Verdict Against Convergys

April 17, 2006 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - A federal jury awarded a disabled worker more than $114,000 in back pay and damages after a five-day trial over claims that his firing by a St. Louis-based firm for excessive tardiness violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

The claim was made against Convergys Customer Management Group Inc., a division of Cincinnati-based Convergys Corp., which provides outsourced customer service and billing operations, reports the Associated Press.

The disabilities suit was brought against the human resources outsourcing giant in 2004, when the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) took up Yigit Demirelli’s case when the man claimed that Convergys would not accommodate his requests for wheelchair access.

Demirelli, 27, a native of Turkey, came to the US for treatment at Shriners Hospital for Children because he suffered from a congenital degenerative bone disease that restricts him to a wheelchair.

The EEOC said Convergys hired him as a telephone customer service representative at its call center in suburban St. Louis, but fired him 18 months later for excessive tardiness – an issue the commission said could have been solved by allowing Demirelli a few extra minutes for meal breaks and a handicapped parking spot and work station.