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New Jersey man sues employer for obesity discrimination

The Mountain Creek ski resort and water park in Vernon is the object of a lawsuit filed by a former employee who claims that the company violated both federal and state discrimination laws. The man, who worked for the resort as a food manager for three years, alleges in his lawsuit that he was ignored for promotions and openly ridiculed because of his weight. With a body mass index over 40, the man, whose weight is over 300 pounds, meets the definition of morbidly obese set by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Americans with Disability Act.

According to his lawsuit, he was repeatedly told by his boss that he needed to lose weight. Additionally, he said management did not consider him for promotions and assigned him duties that he disliked. His lawsuit states that he was ordered to avoid paying vendors and find busty women to work in the bar. The president of the resort denies the allegations.

Anti-discrimination laws protect people from harassment or wrongful termination based on their physical appearance, race, religion, gender and age. When a person believes workplace discrimination is happening, seeking advice from an attorney may lead to relief.

An attorney could explain the legal definitions of discrimination and how to document it in order to defend the person's rights. If evidence points to discrimination, then an attorney and the person might decide to sue the employer. Employment discrimination lawsuits typically seek compensation for lost pay, damage to career, legal fees and reinstatement to a previous position.

Source: NJ.com, "Mountain Creek bosses ridiculed man because he's obese, lawsuit alleges", Seth Augenstein, April 10, 2015

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