Pittston resident accuses former joint employers of unlawful employment practices

SCRANTON — An employee is suing United Methodist Homes and Brad Picchini, former joint employers, citing alleged unlawful employment practices, discrimination, harassment and wrongful termination.

Keith J. Polerecki filed a complaint on April 18, in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania against the defendants alleging that they violated the Family and Medical Leave Act.

According to the complaint, the plaintiff alleges that during his employment, he has experienced episodic flare-ups from a severe burn injury which required ongoing treatment. On November 5, 2015, he requested intermittent leave under FMLA. His leave was approved and was directed to provide his FMLA paperwork to the head of his department, defendant Picchini. Upon seeing his FMLA paperwork, defendant Picchini became aggravated and frustrated and refused to accept his paperwork. From that time on, defendant Picchini, would always harass, humiliate and discipline him for alleged incidents which took place after his return to work from an approved FMLA leave of absence. He suffered damages for lost wages and employment benefits. The plaintiff holds United Methodist Homes and Brad Picchini responsible because defendant Picchini allegedly refused to provide him with any help and/or assistance, engaged in acts of retaliation and discrimination, referred to his use of FMLA leaves as "get out of jail free card". Deffendants also terminated his employment and failed to restore him to an equivalent position with equal pay and benefits.

The plaintiff requests a trial by jury and seeks declaration that defendants are in violation of the FMLA, an award for actual damages, liquidated damages, reasonable costs and attorney's fees and for such other and further relief to which he may be justly entitled. He is represented by Frank J. Tunis, Jr. of Wright & Reihner PC in Scranton.

U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania Case number 3:16-cv-00643

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U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania Harrisburg Division
228 Walnut Street
Harrisburg, PA - 17101

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