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WZOREK v. CITY OF CHICAGO

September 6, 1989

EUGENE WZOREK, Plaintiff,
v.
CITY OF CHICAGO, an Illinois municipal corporation, Defendant



The opinion of the court was delivered by: DUFF

 BRIAN BARNETT DUFF, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

 This action came before this court for hearing on the issue of reinstatement and additional relief for petitioner Eugene Wzorek on August 16, 1989. The court has heard the evidence and has considered the testimony, exhibits, stipulations, memoranda of law and arguments of counsel. The court also has noted its prior findings of fact in this case. See Wzorek v. City of Chicago, 708 F. Supp. 954, 955-59 (N.D. Ill. 1989). Now fully advised in the premises, the hearing having been concluded, the court finds these facts:

 1. The court issued its previous award to Wzorek on March 21, 1989. Between the date of that order and the date of the hearing, had Wzorek been working, he would have earned $ 14,500.00 as a Motor Truck Driver for the City of Chicago. The amount of interest on this amount would be $ 362.50.

 2. In the opinion of the psychiatrist whom the court has appointed for this case, Dr. Jan Fawcett, M.D., Wzorek suffers from an incompletely resolved depression, which may have psychotic features. Wzorek also suffers from severe agoraphobia. His illnesses are such that they totally inhibit his ability to function socially in the workplace. He also is deeply suspicious of the reception he would receive from his fellow employees were this court to reinstate him to his former position with the City. Wzorek, however, still desires reinstatement.

 3. Wzorek has visited his personal psychiatrist eight or nine times since November 1988. He takes anti-depressant medications which cause slow reactions, sedation, dizziness, and fainting. He occasionally has not obtained his prescriptions for lack of money.

 4. Wzorek's present condition is such that he needs more intensive treatment than what he receives presently to restore him to his former capacity to work and enjoy life. Such treatment could last from one to two years, and cost from $ 50,000 to $ 150,000. Unless Wzorek begins this treatment soon, there is an increased risk that Wzorek's disabilities will become fixed and incurable. Publicly supported programs could provide elements of this treatment, but none provide the full range of care that Wzorek requires. Wzorek has not sought out any publicly financed programs.

 5. Wzorek's future wages for a one-year prospective period have a present value of $ 33,518.17.

 CONCLUSIONS OF LAW

 The court relies in great part on its prior conclusions in Wzorek, 708 F. Supp. at 959-61. As a preliminary matter, this court must amend its previous order as to the amount of back pay and prejudgment interest. The Court of Appeals has instructed this court that its previous order was not final, and thus the back pay "clock" has continued to elapse, making what was front pay then back pay now. Accordingly, the court increases the amount of its award of back pay by $ 14,500, and its award of prejudgment interest by $ 362.50.

 The main issue for the present hearing was whether the court should reinstate Wzorek to his former position as a Motor Truck Driver for the City of Chicago. In making this decision, the court must consider all of the facts, but foremost among these is whether Wzorek is presently qualified for the position which he seeks. See id. at 960.

 Based on the testimony presented at the hearing, this court concludes that Wzorek is not presently qualified as a Motor Truck Driver for the City of Chicago. He is severely depressed. His medications render him unfit for driving a truck as part of his regular work. He also is suspicious of the City and its employees, which prevents him from working for the City at this time. The court will thus not reinstate Wzorek to his former position.

 In lieu of reinstatement, Wzorek asks this court to award him front pay. In cases brought under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000e et seq. (1982), and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act ("ADEA"), 29 U.S.C. §§ 621 et seq. (1982), the court may award front pay when reinstatement is inappropriate. See Reeder-Baker v. Lincoln Nat. Corp., 649 F. Supp. 647, 664 (N.D. Ind. 1986), aff'd 834 F.2d 1373 (7th Cir. 1987) (Title VII); McNeil v. Economics Laboratory, Inc., 800 F.2d 111, 118-19 (7th Cir. 1986) (ADEA). The aim of front pay under those statutes is to assist the aggrieved individual as he or she prepares for another job. See Reeder-Baker, 649 F. Supp. at 664; Fadhl v. City and County of San Francisco, 741 F.2d 1163, 1167 (9th Cir. 1984).


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