A man who applied
to be police officer in Atlanta is suing the department
after higher-ups claimed he could not be admitted because he
is HIV-positive. Suing under the pseudonym Richard
Roe, the applicant said the department violated his
privacy and that it has a history of not accepting
officers who have HIV, TheAtlanta Journal-Constitution reported Monday.
say the department did not turn Roe away because of his
HIV status, but city documents sent to the the U.S. Equal
Employment Opportunity Commission show that Atlanta
disqualifies potential officers with blood-borne
diseases, such as HIV. "Diseases passed through the
blood present a hazardous condition and as such are
disqualifying conditions," the city wrote to the EEOC
about Roe's case.
Resource Department director Alfred Elder said that Roe
disqualified himself because he did not return phone calls
from a police recruiter.
With Disabilities Act prohibits employers from firing or
denying employment to those with HIV.
Roe was working
another job within the department when he applied to
become an officer in 2006, according to court documents. He
claims he was told that the routine blood test was
strictly for drug use. The department says Roe was
notified that he was also being tested for HIV. The
doctor administering the test told Roe he was HIV-positive
and that the police department does not hire people
with the virus. (Michelle Garcia, The Advocate)