office modifications for the obese case study

Dustin Young has worked in the accounting department for twelve years. He has always been a large man but has recently put on significant weight and is now morbidly obese. He requests some modifications to his office and the common areas to accommodate his size, citing that he needs the accommodations to continue working. He is a good employee. But the accommodations total several thousand dollars, and the company isn’t in a position to make the investment. Young quits, and a month later, you learn that he has filed a discrimination claim with the EEOC.

This is not a legal concern Dustin Young was not fired he quit. If he had been legally classified as disabled due to his weight then the ADA and EEOC would have been in play to defend him and require REASONABLE accommodations. (U.S. Equal Empolyment Opportunity Commission, 2012) I feel that if the accommodations that Dustin Young requested were reasonable the company would have taken steps to accommodate, this would have been ethical for them to do but legally they are not required to do them. Some of the accommodations that could have been made by the company, are a larger chair, desk, if there is an issue with getting to a different level then maybe moving the office to the floor level or if possible offering to let him work at home, none of these things would have cost the company thousands of dollars. This tells me that he was asking for things that were NOT reasonable.

Amy Price has been with her company for eleven months. Due to reorganization, she was recently moved from being an inventory clerk to a receptionist. The inventory clerk position was eliminated in the restructuring. Price has never been a stellar employee but is now starting to really struggle. Her manager has counseled her numerous times, taking careful notes of the discussions. As the manager works with the human resources (HR) to document a likely termination, Price announces that she is pregnant. Management goes through with the termination a week after the announcement. A month later, Price files a discrimination claim with the EEOC.

Amy Price believes that she was fired due to becoming pregnant ergo if this were the case then she would have legal grounds to file with the EEOC. However, her accusations and presumptions are incorrect the company has done nothing illegal as far as firing Amy Price. They have kept track of her work history and abilities and the facts from these have been documented. Her manager has also spoken to her about her struggle to do her job on several occasions. With the documentation that the company has there is really no other way to look at this termination. When it comes to how the company can prevent this from happening again, this reinforces the need for a probationary period and making sure that if it is not working for the company and/or employee than there needs to be a separation at that point, not at a later date. By the manager keeping notes and working with the human resource to document the issues this has a solid ground to stand on.

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