Florida readers know that it is illegal to display discriminatory behavior in the workplace toward individuals with certain medical conditions. This can include HIV. A recent case in another state illustrates how employees can fight back against discrimination and pursue a beneficial outcome to their situation.
Certain people, including those with HIV, still have a variety of challenges in the workplace, despite changes in the laws and cultural perception. In this particular situation, a man received a job offer to work as a sheriff's deputy, only to lose this offer after the department learned that he has HIV. He is currently fighting back in court, claiming that he experienced HIV employment discrimination.
Unfair treatment based on a medical condition
The man, who currently lives with his husband, has lived with a diagnosis of HIV since 2003. Thanks to advances in medical treatments, this illness has not had a significant negative impact on his everyday life, including his ability to work. However, that changed after he submitted to an HIV screening as a requirement of his job offer to work as a sheriff's deputy. The details of this unfortunate situation are as follows:
- The man had already accepted and secured the job when the department took back the offer after learning of his HIV diagnosis.
- He states that his illness is the reason for the department rescinding the offer, despite having the experience and qualifications necessary for the job.
- He is currently suing the department because he claims that he experienced unfair and unnecessary treatment.
Unfortunately, there is still a significant amount of stigma surrounding this particular medical condition. Despite medical advances and education, people believe misinformation about how transmission of this disease works. Many people with HIV are able to live normal lives, including holding jobs in law enforcement. Individuals who face discrimination because of HIV or another medical condition have the right to fight back and hold responsible parties accountable.
The rights of Florida discrimination victims
According to Florida statute 760.50, it is illegal for an employer to discriminate on the basis of a person's HIV status or the perception of that person's HIV status. If your employer asks inappropriate questions about your health or medical status, and this has affected your employment, you may have a case.
Discrimination laws in the state are complex, and it can be difficult to understand if you have reasons to move forward with a legal claim. A complete evaluation of your case can help you understand your legal options.