Louisiana job applicant faced employment discrimination due to his HIV status

Employment discrimination can come in many forms. If someone is denied a job or mistreated due to a medical condition, this technically violates the ADA and other laws. 

The Iberia Parish Sheriff was sued for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act and discrimination based on how the office handled a job applicant’s hiring process. 

Local sheriff takes away job offer despite applicant meeting all requirements

The applicant had initially received a job offer with the department in 2012. He had already been given a background check and approved for placement by the hiring board. After a required medical examination, the employer found that the applicant was HIV positive and immediately rescinded his job offer. The attorney representing the plaintiff said that based on the facts not in dispute, it will be very difficult for the Iberia Parish Sheriff to make any kind of defense. There is no argument over the fact that the plaintiff did in fact receive a formal job offer after completing all requirements, and that the offer was taken away only based on the applicant’s medical exam results. The judge scheduled the case for trial after a key witness from the department was unavailable for deposition for years, due to alleged family issues. 

The defense strategy for the sheriff appears to be to argue that the plaintiff actually lost his job offer over another situation that involved a different law enforcement agency. They are not contesting the fact that the plaintiff could have performed his job duties regardless of his HIV status. 

The incident in question is related to the applicant’s prior employment with the Abbeville Police Department. He worked there from 2009 to 2012, but was terminated in 2012. Records show that he had discharged a firearm while he had two prisoners in custody. However, this information was disclosed on his Iberia Parish application and during his interview, and he still received the job offer.  

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission began to examine the plaintiff’s accusations shortly after he was denied the job. In 2016, they found enough evidence to allow the action to proceed under the ADA. The victim says that he hopes the publicity generated by the employment lawsuit will help educate the public as a whole and improve law enforcement training. He said the experience traumatized him, and he does not want to deal with similar problems when applying for future jobs. 

Lawyers who defend workers’ rights are available to help

Lawsuits can be filed against companies or government entities who engage in discriminatory behavior. You can speak with a local attorney in Louisiana who protects workers against various kinds of illegal actions by their employer. For more information, get in touch with: 

Miller, Hampton, and Hilgendorf

3960 Government St., Baton Rouge, LA 70806



0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *