The U.S. Equal Employment Commission wants the judge to put the nation’s largest private employer on notice after a jury found that Walmart broke the law when it fired a longtime employee with Down syndrome.
In a motion filed Friday, the federal agency said Walmart should be under tighter oversight for the next five years as well as forced to make clear in company policies that employees with disabilities are entitled to reasonable accommodation.
Marlo Spaeth, who has Down syndrome, worked for nearly 16 years as a sales associate at a Walmart Supercenter in Manitowoc, a small city in eastern Wisconsin on the shore of Lake Michigan. She was fired from her job after the store began using a new computerized scheduling system, which changed her hours. Managers refused to reinstate Spaeth’s longtime work schedule.
The EEOC said Walmart should be forced to post a sign about the lawsuit and its actions at more than 100 stores.
A draft of the memo, which the EEOC made and shared with the judge, lays out why the company was wrong to fire Spaeth, a longtime employee—and uses it as a cautionary tale about the consequences of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act.