How far does a company have to go to accommodate an employee with a disability? That question is at the center of this recent lawsuit.
Here’s what happened: When Starbucks hired Elsa Sallard, a woman with dwarfism, to work at a Texas store, she asked for a stool or a small stepladder to do her job.
Starbucks not only denied her request — claiming a stool could present a danger to both customers and employees — it also fired Sallard on the same day she asked for the stool.
Now the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity has filed a lawsuit against Starbucks, claiming the company denied Sallard a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Starbucks spokeswomen Stacey Krum said Sallard was hired on a trial basis, and she was let go after the store manager decided the work was too physically demanding for her to perform.
According to Krum, “Using the stool in that environment just wasn’t a reasonable accommodation in that store.”
Do you think Starbucks handled the situation correctly — why or why not? Let us know in the Comments section.