A Minneapolis firefighter injured and forced into early retirement because he wasn’t allowed to wear prescribed shoes will be able to pursue a disability discrimination claim against the city, the state’s highest court has ruled.
On Wednesday, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled on a 5-2 majority that employees are able to sue separately under the state workers’ compensation law and the Minnesota Human Rights Act’s disability protection. The court overruled its own decision made 30 years earlier, which said the workers’ compensation provision barred employees from making both claims at once.
Keith Daniel, 57, sued the city in 2015 for injuries he received when his deputy chief said he could no longer wear doctor-prescribed shoes because they violated the department’s policy on footwear. He injured his ankle and later his shoulder while climbing down a fire truck and went into early retirement the following year.