PITTSBURGH – A Borough of Glassport sewage operator is claiming he was fired due to undergoing opioid addiction treatment because the borough believed he was a drug addict.
According to the Oct. 14 filing in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, Michael Desue filed suit against the defendant Borough of Glassport alleging violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Desue, who alleges he suffers from pain caused by injuries and surgery on his left ankle, became dependent on opioid medication. After unsuccessfully trying to wean off the opioids, he alleges he entered a drug addiction treatment facility in October 2017 and when he tried to return to work with the defendant the next month, was fired.
"At the time Glassport fired the plaintiff, plaintiff had successfully completed a drug abuse rehabilitation program and was no longer using any opioid medication," the suit states. "The borough still fired plaintiff because Glassport regarded plaintiff as being a drug addict."
Desue seeks back pay and benefits, compensatory and punitive damages as well as litigation costs. He is represented by John Newborg of Pittsburgh.
U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania case number 2:19-cv-01317