Jewel-Osco Settles Discrimination Lawsuit

CHICAGO (WBBM/CBS) — The parent company of Itasca-based Jewel-Osco has settled a federal discrimination lawsuit filed on behalf of disabled employees.

As WBBM Newsradio 780’s Debra Dale reports, SuperValu has agreed to pay $3.2 million to settle the lawsuit, but denies any wrongdoing.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Debra Dale Reports.

The lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission alleges that Jewel-Osco fired employees with disabilities at the end of medical leaves of absence, rather than bringing them back to work with reasonable accommodations.

About 1,000 Chicago-area employees were fired under the policy, but only 110 of them fit the criteria to share in the legal settlement.

They will each get about $29,000, under a consent decree signed Wednesday by U.S. District Judge Ronald Guzman.

Jewel-Osco is also required under the settlement to ensure that employees involved in making accommodation decisions undergo training on the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Jewel-Osco will also hire consultants to review and recommend changes to job descriptions, ensure that the descriptions of physical requirements for job are accurate, and recommend accommodations to common work restrictions in stores.

Furthermore, Jewel-Osco must revise communications with employees to assure them they need not be 100 percent healed in order to be considered for a return to work, and to inform them of accommodations that may be available to them.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.

  • Sharon

    Now comes the light. I was dismissed as a Pharmacy Technician in 2004 after 5 years of receiving above satisfactory job evaluations. In 4 months I was written up for ambiguous reasons then dismissed. My 20 hours a week went down to 5-8 though they hired another part-time person. I was very hurt by this but was rehired soon after by another pharmacy where my pay was almost doubled. i wish i had known about this but as Ii worked for a free-standing store we were out of the loop. Now I know what the deal was and feel vindicated.

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