NEW ORLEANS – A New York man says the catering company he worked for fired him after they found out he had high blood pressure.

Edward Bess filed a lawsuit Nov. 3 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana against Gulf Express Catering and Staffing Services International and Art Catering Inc., alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1963.

According to the complaint, Gulf Express recruited Bess, a native of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, to work at Art Catering in Louisiana, where he earned $7.25 an hour as a galley hand and housekeeper. After six years on the job, the suit says Bess developed high blood pressure and began taking medication to treat the condition. Bess claims he was terminated Feb. 19 because of his race and because he was perceived as being disabled.

Bess seeks a jury trial and punitive and compensatory damages, plus litigation costs. He is represented by Covington attorneys Dale E. Williams and Chad A. Danenhower of the Law Office of Dale E. Williams.

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana case number 2:15-cv-05681

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