Jun 13, 2003
I wrote in awhile back concerning a lawsuit I am conducting against the U S Postal Service. My attorney asked them for their policy regarding hiv positive employees, they stated they were not aware if one existed. They went on further to say that they did not feel I was disabled with hiv and neuropathy. I have since found the policy that federal agencies are required to follow. The address is "www.opm.gov/ehs/Hivaids.htm". Having this policy in hand we can assuredly win our argument over the question if I am covered under the ADA. My doctor has provided them with enough information which describes my limitations. The policy states, "Employees infected with HIV, or perceived as such, are employees with a disability whose rights are protected by the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 794). The Rehabilitation Act was amended in 1992 (Public Law 102-569, Section 506, dated October 29, 1992) to conform with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 with regard to standards used to determine employment discrimination. However, it is the Rehabilitation Act which governs Federal workplace issues, and discrimination on the basis of such a disability is a violation of the Rehabilitation Act. Discriminatory acts include not only supervisors but may also include actions by co-workers such as harrassment or creation of a hostile work environment..." Since it is so plainly stated our lawsuit will surely prevail on the merits of the case. I guess my question is, how can the lawyer who represents the post office be so wrong? I have been waiting for a hearing for over 3 months now, and establishing that I am covered under the ADA/Rehabilitation Act is critical to my case. I am so glad to find the OPM's policy guidelines to employees with Hiv or Aids. I found it doing a "google" search. The agency told us they were not aware of any such policy. How can a huge agency such as the post office be unaware of the policy/guidelines to employee's with Hiv/Aids. I am very glad to have found the policy so my attorney and I can educate them. I was terminated, but I am looking forward to returning to work.
Response from Ms. Breuer
Good for you! Nice work on the Google search. Yes, I can understand how you can wonder how the lawyer for the other side can "be so wrong." In most lawsuits, each side really wants to be right, or, as in this case, needs to defend actions already taken. I wish you well.
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