Sophie Parks manages a telephone-based customer service department. She is concerned that employees are spending time playing games on their computers and making personal calls on the phone. She wants to install monitoring devices on the phones and computers. She comes to your law firm to ask for advice on whether she can implement the monitoring program; and, what would be the liabilities, if any, she exposes the company to if she does. Your attorney asks you to look into the matter.
In your opinion, can the client implement the monitoring program?
Does she have any liabilities? Analyze.
Read the case of Barnett v. US Airways (2002).
In this case, the Court held that an employer’s proof that a requested accommodation conflicts with seniority rules is ordinarily sufficient to show, as a matter of law, that accommodation under ADA is not reasonable. However, the employee remains free to present evidence of special circumstances that makes a seniority rule exception reasonable in that case.
In light of this decision, examine whether you think collectively bargained rights would override a disabled employee’s right to accommodation under ADA.
In that case, what recourse will the employee have?