My employment was terminated after the CEO announced to a group of us that our boss was terminated that morning without any warning. I made the comment that it was pretty shitty thing to do. This nurse exceute had been at the hospital for over 35 years and I reacted out of irriability secondary to my PTSD. I apoliged and went to see a psychiatrist and was placed on FMLA. Upon returning from FMLA I was terminated too. I beleive this is in retaliation for my comment. The hospital has a progressive disciplinary process that was not followed. A side effect of my PTSD is the irritabitly and outbursts of anger. The story continues but I do not to bore you. I was offered a severance package of 7 weeks which I refused becasue I knew of others who recieved 12 weeks and they were employed for only 2-3 years and I have been there 8 years. My STD was approved and they now offered me the 12 weeks. My question is do I have an EEOC complaint for termination based on ADA guidelines? If so how do pursue the complaint. I was planning on working there another 10 years, when I turned 67.
State/Country relating to question: Ohio
I have read the ADA and Uniform Service or Solidiers and Saliors Disability Act.
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I'm sorry to hear that. Did they actually know about your PTSD at the time that you responded in this manner?
No, The CEO is new. The HR director is new too. However, I did tell them that I was going to seek professional help but they still terminated me.
Unfortunately the ADA claim would not be a winning claim. There's support that PTSD is not even covered under the ADA, but even if it is, the ADA does not insulate emotional or violent outbursts blamed on an impairment. An employee who is fired because of outbursts at work directed at fellow employees has no ADA claim. See Little v. Federal Bureau of Investigation, 1 F.3d 255 (4th Cir.1993); Hamilton v. Southern Bell Telephone Company, 136 F.3d 1047 (5th Cir. 1998). And even if it was protected by the ADA, the ADA only requires reasonable accommodations of known disabilities. If the employer does not know about the disability, then there's no accommodation that the employer is obligated to make.
Now your better argument, although maybe not a winning one, would be FMLA discrimination. That is, you took FMLA leave, and when you returned, you were terminated. They can allege that you were terminated because of your outburst, but you can say that if that were so, why was the progressive disciplinary process not followed? Basically it can turn around and bite them on the rear.
In any event, I would certainly file a discrimination claim based on FMLA retaliation, not based upon ADA discrimination (for the reasons listed above). I don't think that there's any basis for an ADA case, but rather your best claim (although not necessarily a winning one) is the FMLA one.
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The CEO told me that I violated confidentuality by emailing our former CEO to let him know the CNO was terminated. When in fact several people in the community already knew this information. The CEO had already recurited for the position. In fairness he asked us not to inform our employees until he sent out a memo. I did email our old CEO and told him about the termination of the CNO and that I thought the COO and patient experince director were underminding the CNO and therefore she was terminated. This hospital is an affiliate of the Cleveland Clinic and it is my opinion that the new CEO was hired to make the community hospital a part of the clevelnad clinic. It has a very successful drug and alcohol facility and the hospital could become a clinic making all patients drive 60 miles to a cleveland Clinic Hospital.
Again, if they violated the employment policy regarding progressive disciplinary action, that gives you a good way to overcome any "non retaliatory" explanation for this action, and argue that their actions were "pretextual". If anything, it might get you a better severance.
Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney
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