A Chinese job seeker, identified only by his surname Li, has filed a lawsuit against mobile phone giant Nokia (NOK) Dongguan, a subsidiary of Nokia China, for not employing him because he is a Hepatitis B virus carrier.
The job seeker says that Nokia Dongguan cancelled plans to hire him after a physical examination. Li believes that as a big company, Nokia should have better understanding of the disease and should not refuse him employment because of his illness. Li is asking Nokia to employ him and pay him CNY500,000 for mental suffering.
Nokia's global employment policy states that the company will not turn down job applicants because of chronic illnesses unless they can't do the job or if they impose serious danger to others. A spokesman for Nokia has told local media that Nokia is investigating the case and they will take necessary measures to correct any wrongs if the Dongguan company has really made a mistake in refusing Li employment with the company because of his illness.
A vaguely written Chinese law in 2004 does forbid discrimination against Hepatitis B sufferers in most areas except in the food industry.