ERIE — A staff nurse is suing a nursing home, citing alleged disability discrimination, retaliation and wrongful discharge.
Paula O. Klotz filed a complaint on Jan. 23 in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania against Bethlen Home of the Hungarian Reformed Federation of America, dba Bethlen Communities, for allegedly violating the Americans with Disabilities Act and Pennsylvania Human Relations Act.
According to the complaint, on Sept. 13, 2017, Klotz was advised by defendant's supervisor that she was suspended until an investigation was finished into two alleged incidents, one in which a bottle of medication was mislabeled and a second in which Klotz was accused of failing to follow policy.
Klotz alleges that she was singled out for suspension because she had requested an accommodation for her disability of osteoarthritis in her knees as well as disc disease of the lumbar spine, which significantly limited major life activities including, but not limited to, her ability to stand for extended periods of time.
The plaintiff claims Bethlen Home of the Hungarian Reformed Federation of America, dba Bethlen Communities, terminated her on account of the accommodations that she requested on the pretextual reason of "failure to follow policy," despite plaintiff having no knowledge of policy, either because it did not exist, or because it was not enforced.
The plaintiff requests a trial by jury and seeks judgment for back pay, front pay, pre- and post-judgment interest, compensatory damages, reasonable attorney's fees and costs. She is represented by Susan Williams and Adam Gorzelsky of Williams Law Offices in Greensburg.
The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania Case No. is 2:19-cv-00073-MJH.