The Louisiana Record Apr. 28, 2015, 7:09am


A Jefferson Parish resident has sued his former employer, alleging discrimination.

Kerry Thomas filed a complaint April 21 in the U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Louisiana against The Home Depot, citing discrimination and retaliation in a 2011 employment matter.

According to the complaint, Thomas worked as a department manager for Home Depot in an eastern Louisiana branch and when a female employee approached him regarding harassment issues in December 2011, he reported it, initiating a standard investigation. The suit says Thomas was subsequently written up in January 2012, in retaliation for his opposition to alleged unlawful workplace practices.

When Thomas later injured his wrist at work, his physician prescribed light duty (no lifting) for four weeks in order to avoid the need for surgery, according to the suit. Thomas says Home Depot did not honor his request for a reasonable accommodation. Instead, the suit says, he was placed on a performance improvement plan following his March 2012 annual review and was administered a drug test in May—showing negative results—when two managers say a customer complained about him.

Thomas underwent surgery for his wrist injury in June and returned to work in August 2012, and in the aftermath of Hurricane Isaac the plaintiff’s department was understaffed, the suit states. Subsequently, Thomas was written up in October and terminated Nov. 6, 2012, the suit states.

The plaintiff cites violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the ADA, plus physical pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of past and future wages and benefits.

Thomas seeks compensatory and punitive damages, attorney and experts’ fees, expenses and costs. He is represented by attorneys William McGoey of New Orleans and Frances Olivier of Metairie.

U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Louisiana case number: 2:15-cv-01256-ILRL-SS.

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