On Thursday, April 20, 2017, a federal court jury found Generations Healthcare Network at Oakton Pavillion, LLC, a Des Plaines nursing home, liable for firing its former Director of Nursing because she had breast cancer. The jury awarded $400,000 in damages for emotional injuries, one of the largest such awards in Illinois under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The Plaintiff alleged that when Generations found out she had cancer in June of 2014, it immediately began a hunt for her replacement. Generations purchased the nursing facility on September 1, 2014 and just 10 days later, the Plaintiff was fired. Immediately after the Plaintiff was fired the administrator of the facility, told the staff that the Director of Nursing was let go because of her health.
A jury of seven deliberated four hours before finding that Generations actions violate both federal and state laws protecting people from being discriminated against because of a disability such as cancer.
One of the attorneys for the Plaintiff, Jeffrey Taren, with MacDonald Hoague & Bayless stated: “This case shows that cancer survivors continue to face discrimination in the workplace. This verdict is proof that women like the Plaintiff, who stand up for their rights, can obtain justice.”
David Whedbee of MHB is cooperating as counsel with ACLU of Washington to challenge the unconstitutional use of solitary confinement on juveniles in Grays Harbor County. See the attached ACLU Press Release: Grays Harbor Solitary Confinement and an article written about the suit in The Daily World: http://www.thedailyworld.com/news/county-sued-over-allegations-of-solitary-confinement-at-juvenile-facility/.
MHB attorney Lola Zakharova offered insight on how President Trump’s immigration crackdown might affect Northwest employers seeking highly skilled workers. American firms might lose talent to employers in Canada and Europe, Zakharova said in this article in GeekWire.
MHB attorneys David Whedbee and Angela Galloway successfully challenged the city’s failure to produce public records related to the Tacoma Police Department’s controversial use of “Stingray” surveillance equipment. The court ordered the city to pay approximately $50,000 in penalties, and to reimburse attorney’s fees to MHB client Center for Open Policing. For more information, check out this article in The News Tribune. http://www.thenewstribune.com/news/politics-government/article136371963.html
In light of recent events, MacDonald Hoague & Bayless civil rights lawyer, Jesse Wing, recently educated lawyers on how to enforce the First Amendment and State Constitutional right to assemble and demonstrate. At the Continuing Legal Education event sponsored by the Washington State Association for Justice (WSAJ), Jesse explained the law and limits on government restrictions of demonstrations and protests, and how to respond to potential constitutional violations.