A former Hooters waitress is suing the company, saying she had to quit after shaving her head for a surgery to remove a cranial tumor.
Sandra Lupo, 27, had worked at a Missouri Hooters for several years when she left to have the mass removed from her brain last summer. She returned to work several weeks later, reports Alyssa Newcomb at ABC News.
Lupo said her immediate manager supported her return to work despite her bald head. But a regional manager allegedly insisted she wear a wig. The waitress says she initially protested because she couldn't afford a wig. Eventually, she borrowed one from a friend.
According to Lupo, she stopped wearing the wig because it irritated her surgery wounds. Eventually, her manager allegedly cut her hours to the point where Lupo had to quit.
"Hooters of America believes the lawsuit is without foundation, denies the accusations and has filed a motion that the lawsuit be dismissed," a spokeswoman told ABC.
A legal expert told ABC that while the law prohibits discriminating against someone with a disability, Lupo's appearance might not be considered as such.
"In the disability context, if Hooters is to say she's not as attractive now without this wig, if they're selling her attractiveness that might be a real function of her job and mean she isn't qualified by the Americans With Disabilities Act," Marcia McCormick, a professor of law st St. Louis University, told ABC.
Hooters is known for its scantily-clad waitresses. A former waitress told us that being attractive is a major part of the job.
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