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Ex-Consol miner wins $586K in hand-scanning case

FAIRMONT, W.Va. — After a court order, a Marion County resident has been granted more than half a million dollars stemming from a lawsuit involving Consolidation Coal Co. and its parent company, Consol Energy Inc.

According to Mary Tiernan, a program analyst with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the EEOC represented Beverly R. Butcher Jr. in a federal lawsuit where Butcher claimed that Consol refused to accommodate his religious beliefs.

 According to the lawsuit, Butcher worked as a general inside laborer at Consol’s Robinson Run mine in Mannington.

The suit states that Butcher repeatedly informed company officials that submitting to biometric hand scanning violated his sincerely held religious beliefs as an evangelical Christian.

Butcher allegedly also wrote a letter to company officials explaining his beliefs about the relationship between hand-scanning technology and the “mark of the beast” and the antichrist discussed in the New Testament’s book of Revelation. Butcher was requesting an exemption from the hand scanning based on his religious beliefs.

The suit states that Consol refused to consider alternate means of tracking Butcher’s time and attendance and informed him he would be disciplined up to and including discharge if he refused to scan his hand.

The EEOC charged that Butcher was forced to retire…


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