CHARLESTON – A Kanawha County woman is suing Otis Elevator Company after she claims it fired her because she was pregnant and needed to be put on bed rest.
Rebecca A. Hunter was employed by Otis for more than six years as its officer manager for its Big Chimney location, according to a complaint filed March 21 in Kanawha Circuit Court.
Hunter claims in the spring of 2015, she notified the defendant that she was pregnant.
The plaintiff was placed on light duty restrictions by her doctor, which prevented her from moving heavy boxes and operating a forklift, which were part of Hunter’s duties, according to the suit.
Hunter claims on Oct. 30, she was advised that she needed to go on temporary bed rest for a week and on Nov. 4, she received a call from the defendant’s general manager and was advised that her employment was being terminated.
The plaintiff was subsequently notified that her termination date would be the date she was released to return to work, according to the suit.
Hunter claims in January, she advised Otis that she was being released to return to work and was advised that her employment would be terminated effective Jan. 22.
The defendant terminated Hunter’s employment in violation of the West Virginia Human Rights Act, according to the suit.
Hunter claims the defendant discriminated against her based on her sex and in violation of public policy.
The defendant also violated the West Virginia Pregnancy Workers’ Fairness Act, according to the suit.
Hunter is seeking compensatory and punitive damages. She is being represented by Richard W. Walters of Shaffer & Shaffer.
The case is assigned to Circuit Judge James Stucky.
Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 16-C-403