IRS TORMENTS DIABETIC EMPLOYEE
It is hard to imagine that a diabetic employee can still be treated this badly in the 21st century, but maybe the Miami IRS office stopped tracking time somewhere in the 1930s. In any event, a GS-11 IRS Revenue Officer opted to file a complainant with the EEOC rather than use the grievance-arbitration process. That gave her control over who represented her, whether her case went to a hearing, and what kind of settlement she would accept, if any. IRS management put her through a four-year slog there before it agreed to follow an EEOC order to give her a private area to check her blood sugar, tune her insulin pump, and eat whenever her instruments said she must. Up until that EEOC order, her manager insisted that she wait until normal break times and use the women’s room for any private needs. We recommend you get a copy of Denese G. V. Jacob J. Lew, Secretary, Department of the Treasury (Internal Revenue Service), Appeal No. 0120141118 (2016) if you are involved with a diabetic employee whose requests for reasonable accommodation are being given only generalized consideration. The Commission went out of its way in the decision to make it clear that agencies are obligated to respond to each reasonable accommodation request on an individualized basis. In other words, not all diabetics are the same or need the same assistance. EEOC also ordered the agency to conduct an investigation to determine how much she is owed in compensatory damages. We are betting it is north of $100,000.00 based on the public embarrassment her manager made her endure, e.g., she had to hold her insulin pump up in a group meeting to show everyone she was not texting while the manager spoke. And then her attorney should be able to justify about the same amount in fees given how long and hard he had to push the IRS to respond properly.