Business & Economy

The Ivy faces discrimination suit after firing HIV-positive busboy

The Ivy Restaurant
The Ivy Restaurant

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Los Angeles's Ivy restaurant, known for attracting celebrities and the inevitable paparazzi that comes with them, is defending itself against a discrimination lawsuit. A former employee claims he was fired for being HIV positive.

The case involves Reymundo Martinez, who was hired as a busboy by the Ivy in August 2010. The lawsuit claims Martinez did his job well for five months, with no complaint by the restaurant.

It then goes on to say that the restaurant violated state law when it fired him after he requested schedule changes required by his newly-diagnosed HIV condition.

But Richard Irving, owner of the Ivy for 35 years, says the claim is untrue. Irving says that Martinez was inexperienced and unable to do the job, even after the restaurant trained him. What's more, Irving says he was not informed of Martinez’s HIV status until after the restaurant fired him.

The lawsuit was filed by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF) on behalf of Martinez.