A disabled ex-employee is suing Apple over its failures to support his disability

Sherway Gardens
Sherway Gardens (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • A former Apple retail employee is suing the company over claims it failed to properly support his disability.
  • Robert Shaw worked as a Genius in two Apple stores in Ontario.
  • The suit claims Apple failed to comply with the law, and acted in a discriminatory fashion in its constructive dismissal of Shaw.

A former Apple retail employee is suing the company over claims it failed to properly support his disability.

Robert Shaw worked as a Genius for eight years, six of those at the Square One store in Mississauga, and a further two in Apple's Sherway Gardens store in Toronto. According to Patently Apple:

Robert Shaw alleges in a Statement of Claim that Apple repeatedly refused to work on an individual accommodation plan with him, opting instead to provide piecemeal solutions to his disability.

According to the report, the action was filed in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice by layer Andrew Monkhouse. He says that Apple may have failed to comply with AODA, Ontario's Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. He also claims that Shaw's constructive dismissal "constitutes discriminatory conduct" under the Ontario Human Rights Code.

The report claims that Shaw worked in Mississauga until 2017. Upon moving to Apple's Sherway Gardens store, it is purported that Shaw requested that Apple make changes to the store in order to accommodate his disability. Namely, he required a table at a suitable, lower high and automatic doors. Apparently, Shaw was told this would be carried out, but that the works never materialized. After four months, Shaw began to experience soreness and numbness in his arms and hands as a result of working at a table that was too high for him due to his wheelchair.

The claim alleges that an appropriate table was never provided and that only three of seven doors were made automatic. Rather than a button on the doors, Shaw was given a remote control to open them that apparently repeatedly failed. Apple refused to automate the store's remaining doors due to the cost. The report then notes:

The Claim also states that Robert was told by a senior manager at Apple that he wouldn't be promoted if he continued to be unhappy in his role. The manager further suggested the company might not be the right place for him.

Shaw is suing for lost wages as well as damages as a result of the ordeal.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9