Home Depot will pay a former cashier $100,000 for violating the Americans with Disabilities Act after firing the 13-year employee while she was on unpaid leave recovering from the removal of a cancerous tumor.
The settlement includes a requirement for the Atlanta-based home improvement retailer to provide anti-discrimination training and stops Home Depot from denying reasonable accommodations in the future, according to a statement from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Although Home Depot told Judy Henderson, a Maryland cashier, that she was being let go for lack of work, the company hired another cashier at her store — and others at nearby stores — after Henderson sent Home Depot medical notes saying when she would be able to return to her job, the EEOC said. In the past, when Home Depot had experienced a seasonal slowdown, Henderson had been temporarily laid off, not terminated.
Stephen Holmes, a Home Depot spokesman, said Henderson had taken a total of four and a half years of medical leave during her tenure with the company.
“We don’t believe we violated the law,” he said.