Employee with medical condition sues after restroom break denied

Michelle Massey, East Texas Bureau Sep. 27, 2010, 8:27am

TEXARKANA-An employee with a medical condition that causes frequent urination is suing his employer for denying his request for a restroom break.

Claiming violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Orvin Roy LaForce Jr. filed suit against Pilgrim's Pride on Sept. 16 in the Eastern District of Texas, Texarkana Division.

LaForce states he has a disability that requires him to urinate frequently.

According to the complaint, he was hired by Pilgrim's Pride in September 2007 and provided a letter from his treating physician about his need for frequent restroom breaks in May 2008.

On June 22, 2009, LaForce alleges his supervisors told him that he could only go to the restroom on scheduled breaks and that he would not receive special treatment. He claims he repeatedly urinated on himself because he was not allowed to go to the restroom. He resigned his position two days later due to the treatment, according to the complaint.

The lawsuit argues "Plaintiff LaForce was constructively discharged on June 24, 2009, because of his disabilities and Defendant Pilgrim Pride's refusal to accommodate his actual and/or perceived disability."

The plaintiff is seeking more than $300,000 in compensatory damages for back pay, restoration of lost benefits, mental pain and suffering, emotional distress, humiliation and embarrassment, plus punitive damages, interest, attorney fees and court costs.

He is also asking the court to enter an injunction to require Pilgrim's Pride to reinstate him.

LaForce is represented by Curtis B. Stuckey of Stuckey, Garrigan & Castetter in Nacogdoches. Jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Judge David Folsom is assigned to the case.

Case No. 5:10-cv-00165

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