Former Barista Awarded $75K In Starbucks Lawsuit

August 25, 2011 ( – A former El Paso barista who was fired after being denied a stool was awarded $75,000 in a lawsuit settlement against Starbucks Coffee Company.  

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) filed a lawsuit in May (see Starbucks Accused of Firing Employee Due to Dwarfism) against the worldwide chain for firing Elsa Sallard, who is a dwarf, after she asked for a stool to perform her job. 

The lawsuit, which was filed in El Paso, stated Starbucks fired Sallard after three days of training because it deemed she would pose a danger to customers and co-workers. The EEOC contends Starbucks’ actions violated the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). 

The ADA requires employers to make reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities as long as it doesn’t pose a hardship to the business. 

In addition to the monetary award, Starbucks agreed to add ADA training for managers and supervisors in all of its El Paso stores on reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities.