HUNTINGTON – A man is suing Allied Waste after he claims he was discriminated against because he had previously filed workers' compensation claims.
On Nov. 22, 2006, while in the employ of Allied Waste, Ronald V. Long suffered a work-related lifting injury and timely filed a workers' compensation claim for the cervical disc injury, according to a complaint filed Dec. 15 in Cabell Circuit Court.
Long claims on Oct. 2, 2007, as a result of the injury, he underwent an anterior cervical diskectomy, foraminotomy and C6-C7 fusion and was released to return to work on March 6, 2008, with restrictions not to lift more than 50 pounds and "front loader job only at Allied Waste."
On May 18, 2011, Long was operating a front loader owned by Allied Waste when he suffered another work-related injury when a motor vehicle ran a red light, according to the suit.
Long claims he filed a workers' compensation claim for the left knee and lower back injury and received medical treatment and returned to modified work on Oct. 20, 2011.
Allied Waste ordered an independent medical examination with Dr. Prasadarao B. Mukkamala on Jan. 17, 2012, which resulted in a report on Jan. 18, 2012 were Mukkamala opined that Long had reached maximum medical improvement and that he could return to work with restrictions for an additional three months, according to the suit.
Long claims Mukkamala released him with no restrictions on April 18, 2012, from the work injury.
On Nov. 30, 2012, Long received a telephone call from Kim Cecil, the manager of the Sycamore Landfill, a facility owned and operated by Allied Waste, according to the suit. Cecil advised Long not to return to work under further notice from Rick Claar, the general manager of Allied Waste in Huntington.
Long claims Claar embarked on a course of conduct targeting him as a result of him having filed workers' compensation claims.
Allied Waste knew or should have been aware or should have known of Claar's conduct and did nothing to prevent or stop the discrimination and course of conduct, according to the suit.
Long is seeking $500,000 for compensatory damages and $500,000 for punitive damages. He is being represented by Michael Paesani of Michael Paesani PLLC.