Wheelchair-Bound Controller Says FAA Is 'Retaliating' By Letting Him Go | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

Airborne Unlimited -- Recent Daily Episodes

Episode Date

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Airborne On ANN

Airborne 12.05.16

Airborne 12.06.16

Airborne 11.30.16

Airborne 12.01.16

Airborne 12.02.16

Airborne Hi-Def On YouTube

Airborne 12.05.16

Airborne 12.06.16

Airborne 11.30.16

Airborne 12.01.16

Airborne 12.02.16

Mon, Jun 26, 2006

Wheelchair-Bound Controller Says FAA Is 'Retaliating' By Letting Him Go

Man Sued Over Accessibility In 2002

Is it discrimination... or the agreed-upon outcome of an earlier court settlement? That's the question posed by the case of a Miami air traffic controller who says he received a surprise gift from the FAA for his 50th birthday: a pink slip.

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports the agency notified controller Ray McLeod last week that as of Monday, June 26 -- McLeod's 50th birthday -- he will no longer have the job he's held for 21 years.

The matter of why that's the case is subject to debate, however. McLeod -- who uses a wheelchair -- says the FAA is "retaliating" for a suit he brought against the agency in 2002, for failing to make his workplace more accessible to the handicapped.

"To be forced out the door without time to prepare, to me, that's just not right," McLeod said. "I still have financial responsibilities and bills."

Not surprisingly, the FAA denies McLeod's accusation that the agency is retaliating against him for his lawsuit -- but rather that it was an agreed-upon outcome from a subsequent court settlement reached between the two parties. Upon turning 50, an FAA spokesman said, McLeod is eligible to receive his pension -- and his birthday is also the date the FAA can let him go.

"The agency takes great pride to create a positive environment for employees who have disability concerns," said FAA spokesman Geoff Basye.

McLeod was paralyzed in a 1975 motorcycle accident. After undergoing rehabilitation, he worked as an airline dispatcher for 10 years, before being hired on as a controller at Miami Center.

There, McLeod says, he struggled to work in an environment not suited to the needs of the wheelchair-bound. The matter got worse when in 2000, the center installed new radar displays too low squeeze his wheelchair under.

McLeod first filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, then a lawsuit in US District Court in Miami. The FAA opted to settle the suit, allowing McLeod to continue working as an assistant controller -- until the first day he was eligible for retirement.

McLeod said his interpretation of the clause was that he could continue working for the FAA in another position.

"There have been other controllers who are no longer capable of working air traffic for medical reasons, who have been assigned other jobs," he said.

"After being a good employee for 20-plus years, it's just no way for anybody to be treated."

FMI: www.faa.gov, www.eeoc.gov

Advertisement

More News

Barnstorming: Saving Santa Monica¬Ö and Enhancing The Future of Aviation

As If We Didn’t Have Enough to Do, Another Critical Challenge Demands Our Full Attention It has been a brutal few weeks… starting with the loss of our dear friend, Bob>[...]

VSS Unity, The New SpaceShipTwo, Free-Flies For The First Time

Two Years After Tragedy, The Program Proves It Still Has The Right Stuff The newest SpaceShipTwo has flown free for the first time. According to the Virgin Galactic crew, "Our new >[...]

AMA Opposes Orlando City Council Drone Ordinance

Proposal Runs Afoul Of Federal Authority Over The Nation’s Airspace... The Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) sent a letter to the Orlando City Council in opposition to a pro>[...]

Aero-News: Quote of the Day (12.05.16)

"This represents culmination of many years of hard work and perseverance by the team here in the USA and back at base in Germany too, we’re literally over the moon.” So>[...]

AeroSports Update: AutoGyro Now Type Certificated In The U.S.

The FAA Has Granted Type Certification To AutoGyro For Its Factory-Built Calidus Aircraft It seems we hear a lot about new FAA type certification of airliners and corporate jets, b>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2016 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC