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Elisa Madonia lawsuit: Woman fired for cancer? Employee at S37 for four years

Hospital bed in medical center setting
Hospital bed in medical center setting
Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

An Elisa Madonia lawsuit is being filed this week after the ill woman from Chicago claimed that she was fired from her workplace once she revealed she had cancer. The employee, Ms. Elisa Madonia, has been a worker at S37 for over four years now, but claims that officials at her company moved to boot her after she alerted her work that she needed a long time off for surgery, chemotherapy, and recovery. The NY Daily News reports this Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014, that the alleged victim is now suing the property management corporation for the cruel and unlawful decision.

The Elisa Madonia lawsuit case involves a woman now suffering from cancer who claims that her boss fired her after he discovered she was stricken with esophageal cancer. While it was difficult enough for the woman to deal with having stage three aggressive cancer, her higher-ups at S37 — a property management company — only made the situation worse, promptly canning her almost immediately after it became clear she would need significant time away from the workplace.

“Not only I’m being hit with a disease, that I have cancer, now you take my job too away from me?” Madonia said.

For over four years now, Elisa Madonia was a loyal employee of S37. She was officially diagnosed with cancer back in Oct. 2013, and as part of policy, sent her company a formal letter telling what medical health issues she was facing. She also alerted them that she would need a minimum of several weeks off for surgery, cancer treatments, and post-surgery recovery. Within two hours of receiving the alert, Madonia was called into the office by her boss for an “emergency meeting.”

According to the criminal lawsuit, her boss recommended that she immediately resign. He reportedly alleged to pay her for six months of COBRA in order to assist with her health care expenses. When she said that wasn’t good enough and she wouldn’t resign, the company proceeded to fire her, alleges Elisa Madonia.

“That was just the cruelest thing I ever heard,” Kathleen Derosa, the caretaker for the cancer-stricken woman, said in a recent statement.

Now, Madonia is filing a disability discrimination lawsuit against all of S37. Her hired lawyer, Eugene Hollander, said the company’s actions were nothing less than illegal.

“I think they had an obligation to sit down with Elisa and say, hey, what can we do here? Can you work three days a week? Can you telecommute for some period of time? Instead of the knee jerk reaction of firing her on the spot,” Hollander said.

“I’ve been fighting for my life,” said the distraught Madonia. “But I’m trying to stay positive.”