Disabled Veteran Says He Was Fired From Home Depot After Missing Work To Deal With Injuries

| by Emily Smith
a Home Depot store signa Home Depot store sign

West Virginia veteran Christopher Scalf is suing Home Depot after the store allegedly fired him for missing work to deal with injuries he received while deployed in Iraq.

Home Depot provides a specific application page for veterans, and Scalf had been hired and worked at the Teays Valley, West Virginia, store for three years before he was fired, WCHS reports. He had also specifically noted on his application that he was a disabled veteran, according to the West Virginia Record.

Matt Plants, Scalf's attorney, told WCHS that the store fired Scalf for taking time off to attend to medical needs.

“While he is at [work] he would get headaches, and instead of providing some reasonable accommodations, Home Depot simply terminated his employment,” Plants said.

Scalf reportedly spent five years in the army and 15 months in Iraq. He was in several gun fights, and hit with a roadside bomb 12 times. Scalf suffered from traumatic brain injury, PTSD, and now gets headaches so bad he can’t open his eyes.

“These allegations are particularly concerning when you’re dealing with a company that is campaigning that they’re hiring disabled veterans,” Plants said about Scalf's claims.

In a statement to WCHS, Scalf said that he was upset with the company and wondered how many other veterans Home Depot had mistreated.

He filed his lawsuit against the store on Aug. 20, alleging disability discrimination and breach of contract in 2013, the West Virginia Record reported. The lawsuit claims that Home Depot applied its sick leave policy in an inconsistent and discriminatory manner. The store is also accused of not paying Scalf's full wages within the next pay period, which is required by law.

Plants added to WCHS that Scalf was an excellent employee, and he blamed Home Depot for not accommodating his needs.

On Oct. 14, Home Depot said that Scalf’s termination was not related to his status as a veteran. The company also stated that it has hired over 30,000 veterans and active duty members. 

Sources: WCHSTV, West Virginia Record

Photo Credit: Mike Mozart/Flickr (2)