EEOC Sues Wal-Mart For Firing Disabled Employee

September 20, 2011 ( – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has filed suit against Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. for refusing to allow a long-term employee with cerebral palsy to return to work after a medical leave. 

According to a news release, Wal-Mart terminated sales clerk Marcia Arney, who was attempting to return to her job following a medical leave for surgery. The surgery was necessary due to her disability, cerebral palsy. When Arney, who had worked at the store as a sales clerk for 22 years, showed the store manager a note from her doctor stating that she needed to take periodic breaks, he refused to return her to her job, and instead required she produce a medical release with no restrictions.

The EEOC alleges that the medical restriction could have been accommodated by the retailer.

The suit seeks injunctive relief, including the formulation of policies to prevent and correct disability discrimination. The suit also seeks damages for Arney and punitive damages against Wal-Mart.