Former postal worker says he was fired for being HIV-positive

By Advocate.com Editors

Originally published on Advocate.com July 16 2003 11:00 PM ET

A former postal worker in Hawaii last week filed a lawsuit in federal court claiming that he was fired from his job in January when his supervisors learned that he is HIV-positive, The Honolulu Advertiser reports. Matthew Walker is seeking $300,000 in damages from the U.S. Postal Service and a reinstatement to his former job. According to court documents, Walker claims he was discriminated against and specifically targeted for scrutiny by his boss after she learned he was HIV-positive during a hearing process over another matter. Walker says the animosity between him and his supervisor began when he first filed a race-related complaint against her in 1999, which was later settled. Walker's attorney says the USPS acted illegally in discriminating against the man and by firing him once his HIV status became known to his bosses. "Despite federal laws, administrative regulations, and even a U.S. Supreme Court decision, once the postal service learned of Mr. Walker's HIV-positive status, he became the target of discrimination," attorney Clayton Ikei The Advertiser. USPS officials had no comment on the lawsuit.