Written By Las Vegas based Law Clerk: Robert Maxey (Las Vegas, Nevada)
In Las Vegas, we are guaranteed the right to work. At first this may seem like a readily accepted idea but when considering many countries prevent people from working, on the basis of discrimination, the reality of our privilege sinks in. We have progressive laws that allow individuals the liberty to pursue work and happiness. In Nevada, equity is a cardinal principal and treating others with the same respect, as everyone else, is essential. We may not all be born of the same race, religion or economic background but we interact on a level playing field.
The Nevada Department of Employment and Training, along with the EEOC, is like a referee patrolling this playing field and guaranteeing the rights of workers. When Nevada and federal authorities come across illegal practices, they intervene and step in to give Las Vegans a fair chance at enforcing their rights. Recently the EEOC hit a grand slam with its largest settlement regarding the Americans with Disabilities Act against Verizon Communications. Verizon has agreed to pay $20,000,000 in order to dismiss claims made against it by the EEOC.
Verizon has been firing employees who accrued a certain number of missed days a year regardless of the cause or reason. The system Verizon implemented was structured so that employees would earn a certain number of points on each absence. Once an employee had received so many points they were eligible for disciplinary action or termination. However, the EEOC says that such a policy is too broad and does not accommodate for individuals with disabilities. Verizon replied to the suit by saying it was settling to avoid further legal costs and that it feels it went above what was expected by law in its policy. It also said it would incorporate the concerns of the EEOC into its new company policy.
This is not at all uncommon in the field of law where it is not necessary to know the law in order to be found guilty of violating it. Verizon alleged that it intended to develop a generous absentee program for its employees allowing them more flexibility. Despite this avowed intention, the company was pursued for allegedly not addressing the needs of the hundreds of disabled employees who were fired due to the policy.
Every business requires some sort of oversight and accountability. The job of the Nevada Department of Employment and Training and the EEOC has guaranteed the rights of hundreds of thousands of workers who work for Verizon Communication. This however, would not have been possible had a couple employees from Maryland not filed charges. Your rights are important and legal counsel should always be sought when justice is at stake.
A full article can be found here: Verizon to pay $20 million to settle discrimination suit
Our law firm does not represent anybody in the incident described above. The commentary is for educational and commentary purposes only. If you or someone you know has had your rights violated or feel there are illegal practices occurring at your work and would like to be represented by a Nevada attorney, contact our office for a free confidential case review and receive a response within hours. Call Toll Free 866-414-0400.