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Mayfield Candle Manufacturer Files Motion To Dismiss Wrongful Termination Lawsuit

Dennis Benkert / CC BY-SA

  Attorneys representing a candle factory in Mayfield filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit against the factory earlier this week in Graves Circuit Court. The factory and its chief executive officer are named in a wrongful termination lawsuit.

The motion said the lawsuit should be dismissed on account of improper venue and no sufficient cause for claiming disability discrimination. The motion also references a case reviewed by the Kentucky Supreme Court regarding whether or not obesity is a characteristic protected by the Kentucky Civil Rights Act. The supreme court ultimately ruled being overweight, standing alone, is not sufficient to state a cause of action for disability discrimination.


Attorneys representing Mayfield Consumer Products (MCP), LLC and CEO David Burch argue the proper venue for hearing the case is the Secretary of Labor in Puerto Rico. The motion cites a work agreement contract which requires any complaints must be filed in that manner. The motion also notes former employee Armando Rivera Hernandez, who filed the lawsuit, currently resides in Puerto Rico.


Hernandez’s lawsuit against MCP and Burch claims he was terminated for being overweight, “and for no other legitimate reason.” The lawsuit states Hernandez and other “unknown defendants” were recruited by MCP with a promise of gainful employment as laborers.


But when they arrived and the company’s managerial staff learned several recruits had physical limitations, medical conditions, disabilities, or a combination of conditions, they were discriminated against and wrongfully terminated as a result.


The lawsuit states Hernandez, upon arrival, performed all of his job duties in a satisfactory manner despite being “overweight and obese.”


Attached to the lawsuit is the screenshot of a text message that appears to be sent by Burch which states, “We are working diligently to clean up the epileptic, obese, pregnant, and special needs issues.”


The motion to dismiss is scheduled for a hearing in Graves Circuit Court on Monday. 

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