Thursday, April 07, 2011

EEOC says Ariz. worker fired for mental disability; sues Gannett in federal court over her dismissal

A Gannett software subsidiary in Tempe, Ariz., unlawfully fired an employee because of her medical disability, according to a federal lawsuit U.S. workplace regulators filed today in Phoenix against GCI.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission said Robin Parker-Garcia was dismissed after returning from a medical leave of absence for what the agency called a "mental disability." The EEOC did not say when the events occurred.

In a statement, the agency said it brought suit against GCI and its subsidiary, Gannett Media Technologies, in U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona in Phoenix, "after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process."

The agency said it is seeking monetary relief, including back pay with prejudgment interest, compensatory damages, and punitive damages. The agency is also seeking an injunction prohibiting future discrimination "and any other curative relief to prevent the Gannett companies from engaging in any further discriminatory practices."

Corporate is reviewing the EEOC's complaint, according to spokeswoman Robin Pence, who told the Phoenix Business Journal that the company doesn't comment on pending litigation.

Parker-Garcia worked in Gannett Media Technologies' Tempe office as an application support analyst, the EEOC says. The subsidiary, started in 1994, develops software for the publishing industry. Tempe is about 13 miles east of Phoenix, where The Arizona Republic and KPNX-TV are based.

The EEOC is responsible for enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination.


  1. Right on, EEOC. I guess this suit settles the debate on this blog on whether federal investigators are interested in unfair and discriminatory actions in connection with the layoffs. I think there are some huge settlements coming for those who made valid complaints.

  2. Aren't all the GMC members MENTALLY DISABLED? How could this person win the case when we have a bunch of "retards" running this company?

  3. And then there's this awesome man at Habitat, who has quite a different take on leadership (video comes up after the ad):

  4. I don't know the specifics of the case, but it depends on whether someone, mentally fit or not, can do the job. As I was told, if a condition prevents someone from performing the job adequately, he or she can be let go. But the timing of this is suspicious. Fired just after returning from leave?

  5. This is not surprising, given the entities involved.


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