NEW YORK – (hospitalitybusinessnews.com) Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today announced a settlement with Wyndham Hotel Group LLC for the termination of a worker because she was on jury duty in Bronx Supreme Court. State law prohibits employers from discharging or otherwise penalizing employees on account of jury duty. The agreement secures $20,000 in restitution for the unlawful termination.
“Jury duty is the keystone of our justice system and employers are legally barred from penalizing workers who are selected to serve,” Attorney General Schneiderman said. “My office will pursue penalties against companies who violate the law. We cannot tolerate employers who fire or otherwise retaliate against workers for performing an essential civic duty.”
The settlement is the result of an investigation by the Attorney General’s Labor Bureau into the March 2014 firing of a Wyndham Midtown 45 employee, who had been notified in mid-February 2014 that she had been summoned for jury duty. The employee had been working at Wyndham Midtown 45, a Manhattan hotel, since November 2013, and had not received any critical or disciplinary feedback prior to being summoned for jury service. After reporting for jury duty, she was selected to serve as a juror in a murder trial in the Bronx Supreme Court. On March 20, 2014, Wyndham fired her while she was still on jury duty.
New York Judiciary Law § 519 bars employers from firing, or imposing any other penalty on employees because they are serving as jurors.