Diabetes Rights Protected in a Federal Case!

There are a whole bunch of interesting issues to this case however it seems PWD have prevailed and earned some protection of our rights!

An Indiana paramedic was found to have been wrongfully terminated:

news story

While the ruling seems to have come from a jury, there is an interesting ruling on a motion that lays out quite a few details of the case. It’s a bit lengthy at 47 pages but I found it to be a page-turner and figured I’d share and see what you folks thought?

ruling on motion for summary judgment, which the defendant lost…


AcidRock, I found this case to be very surprising and not what i expected at all as I followed it. All i can really figure is that the employer had two had significant chances to not face this issue and both times they declined. The two times, being when she was hired and then made full time. Her job never changed and the requirement only seemed to change when the employer wished to discharge her.

Most cities who employ EMT’s require three things. 1. That they be firefighters, 2. That hold an appropriate divers license for vehicles, and 3. That the person meet minimal requirements to be be an EMT. In this case, the first two qualifications were not imposed before being hired. At the time she was discharged it appears that the employer attempted to impose one or both requirement on an existing employee for the purpose of discharging her.

There is a plan for appeal on behalf of the employer and in the mean time I understand she will be reinstated. The question for the court may if the employer can correct a ‘mistake’ in hiring by imposing post hiring requirements.

This case will be at the court o of appeals in about 14 months according to the attorney for the employer (Chicago) then it might end up at the supreme court. I doubt this will be over for a bit.


I read the entire motion and ruling. I couldn’t follow all the legal issues but I did find it interesting that T1D can be an emergency medical technician. I think with a CGM and cooperative coworkers, this can be a workable situation.

I’m glad the ruling went her way and hope that other employment situations will try to implement reasonable accommodations where possible. In this situation, with today’s technology, it seems her BG number could easily be prominently displayed in the ambulance for all to see and sources of glucose staged in several places. With attentive use of a CGM, hypoglycemia could be avoided.

Very interesting case and a helpful ruling on the motion for a summary judgement. I’m a little surprised that she won the jury trial. I am not convinced that CGM is accurate enough to insure that someone won’t go low unless they plan on running a bit on high side so that there is a fairly wide margin for error if blood sugar starts to fall rapidly. The fact that she was working as a paramedic with a blood sugar reading of 26 after treating is scary as hell.

If this does end up at the Supreme Court, I’m sure Justice Sotamayor’s opinion or dissent will make compelling reading.