Cook sues after losing job for reporting to jury duty

Michelle Keahey Oct. 3, 2011, 6:47am


A cook for a retirement community center has filed a lawsuit against his employer after he lost his job for reporting for jury duty.

Arthur Simon filed suit against Holiday Retirement Corp. on Sept. 21 in federal court in New Orleans.

Holiday Retirement Corp. operates Nouveau Marc, an independent senior living community in Kenner.

On June 2, Simon states he received a notice to report for jury duty on June 6.

According to his lawsuit, he immediately provided his manager and immediate supervisor with a copy of the notice. Simon was told that he would get a letter from work stating that he could not attend because of the limited about of chefs.

Simon claims he never received the letter and was told that he would have to work the day that he was to report for jury duty.

At the end of Simon's shift, he was fired for "attendance" and told that his supervisor needed "someone that would work."

The defendant is accused of violating the Jury System Improvements Act.

"Holiday Retirement Corp. intimidated Simon as a result of his being called for jury duty, made statements to Simon regarding his federal jury service indicating hostility toward jury service, became hostile toward Simon for refusing to ignore the jury summons, and subjected Simon to reprimand and termination," the lawsuit states.

Simon is asking the court for an award of loss of income and benefits, reinstatement or front pay, general damages, civil penalty of $5,000, attorney's fees, court costs and interest.

The plaintiff is represented by Dale E. Williams of Law Office of Dale Edward Williams in Covington.

U.S. District Judge Jay C. Zainey is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:11-cv-02369

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