Michelle Keahey, East Texas Bureau Mar. 5, 2013, 10:16am

MARSHALL - A lab technician has filed a lawsuit against his employer claiming that when he returned from medical leave his supervisor ridiculed him in front of co-workers.

Jeff Ellis filed suit against Westlake Chemical Corp. on March 1 in the Marshall Division of the Eastern District of Texas.

Ellis was hired as a laboratory operating in 1996 by Texas Eastman, Westlake’s predecessor. He was promoted to lab technician in 2001 and remained in that position until his termination in March 2011.

According to the suit, in April 2010 Ellis requested medical leave due to a serious medical condition. When he returned to work eight weeks later, Ellis states he was ridiculed by coworkers for his medical condition. He alleges his supervisor made comments that he had been castrated.

He filed a formal complaint with the company for the release of his private medical information in January 2011. He was terminated from his position two months later and was simply told it was not working out, the suit claims.

The defendant is accused of Family and Medical Leave Act retaliation for his supervisor’s ridiculing Ellis in front of co-workers using personal medical information used to approve the FMLA leave.

The plaintiff is seeking an award of damages for lost wages and benefits, back pay, interest, liquidated damages, attorney’s fees and court costs.

Ellis is represented by Dallas attorney Stephen E. Hammel.

A jury trial is requested.

Case No. 2:13-cv-00193

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