Posted in Uncategorized on May 8, 2013
A Tulsa-based company has settled a discrimination claim for $50,000.00. Former memo clerk Rhonda Jones filed suit against Fabricut, Inc. pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act for using family medical history to make an employment decision.
According to the lawsuit, Jones claims that Fabricut unlawfully asked questions about her family history during a pre-employment medical screening. When Fabricut rescinded its job offer, Jones filed suit claiming the questions about her family medical history violated the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, or “GINA”.
Passed in 2008 by President George Bush, GINA prevents employers from discriminating against employees or prospective employees on the basis of family medical history. Before GINA, employers could deny employment to an applicant based on that person’s predisposition to contract an illness in the future, regardless of whether the person was actually afflicted with any medical condition that impaired their ability to perform the essential functions of the job.
GINA provides broad-based protections against employers who attempt to use genetic or family medical history to screen job applicants. The type of “genetic” information covered by GINA includes information about an individual’s genetic tests and the genetic tests of an individual’s family members, as well as information about the manifestation of a disease or disorder in an individual’s family members (i.e. family medical history). Family medical history is included in the definition of genetic information because it is often used to determine whether someone has an increased risk of getting a disease, disorder, or condition in the future.
Importantly, an employer may never use genetic information to make an employment decision because genetic information is not relevant to an individual’s current ability to work.
If you have questions about GINA or discrimination under the ADA, contact the attorneys at Bryan & Terrill Law, 918-935-2777.