The Real Deal New York

“You will never work for me,” Balazs allegedly tells mom with disabled son

Hotelier accused of turning down job applicant because of her son's muscular dystrophy
August 26, 2015 01:15PM

Hotelier Andre Balazs is facing allegations of wrongfully discriminating against a prospective employee, allegedly telling her that her disabled son would be a burden on productivity.

Karen Anderson claims Balazs rejected her in an interview last year for a controller job at his Sunset Beach hotel in Long Island after she told the hotelier that she has a son in his 20s living with muscular dystrophy.

Balazs allegedly told Anderson she “could never work for him,” as her son’s disability meant “she would not be able to devote adequate time to her professional responsibilities,” according to a discrimination lawsuit filed in Manhattan Federal Court earlier this year.

The hotelier’s trendy properties have included The Standard in the Meatpacking District and the Chateau Marmont in Hollywood.

“[Balazs] looked at me and said, ‘You will never work for me,’” Anderson told the New York Post. “He said, ‘If you have a disabled child, you will never be able to give me 100 percent.’”

Balazs tried to get the lawsuit, which seeks unspecified damages, thrown out, but a federal judge rejected the motion Monday.

A legal representative for the hotelier said the decision over Anderson’s employement “was made on the merits and was not based on any discriminatory considerations.” [NYP]Rey Mashayekhi