The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on Thursday announced a lawsuit against Walmart Inc. of Bentonville after the retailer fired a worker who has a seizure disorder.
The suit accuses Walmart of failing to provide a reasonable accommodation for the employee, who worked as a cashier at a store in Bullhead City, Arizona.
In a statement Friday, Walmart said, “We have been a top employer for those with disabilities for years and have thousands of associates who perform their jobs with reasonable accommodation. We don’t tolerate discrimination of any kind and take allegations like this seriously. We are reviewing the complaint and will respond in court as appropriate.”
The employee, Stevey Wiman, asked for her seizure-related absences to be excused under a company attendance policy that makes accommodations for disabilities. But Walmart allegedly denied Wiman’s request, told her that the absences would not be excused, and fired her.
The EEOC said it filed suit after first attempting to reach a settlement through its pre-litigation conciliation process.
The lawsuit alleges violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act and the ADA Amendments Act, which require employers to provide reasonable accommodations for employees with disabilities, including making exceptions to corporate policies. It seeks compensatory and punitive damages for Wiman.
It’s second time this year that the EEOC has sued Walmart over alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act. In March, the agency filed suit after a Walmart store in Charlotte fired a deli employee who had missed work due to Crohn’s disease, a chronic condition that causes inflammation in the digestive tract.