The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission settled a retaliation lawsuit against Brookdale Senior Living Communities after the EEOC sued Brookdale for alleged race discrimination and retaliation. The EEOC’s lawsuit claimed that Brookdale had employed an African American caregiver who overheard her co-workers making comments with racial connotations that she found offensive. This caregiver complained about the racially offensive comments and discrimination. Shortly after her complaint, Brookdale suspended the caregiver and then eventually fired her in retaliation for the complaints. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employers from retaliating when an employee complains about race discrimination, even in circumstances where the discrimination is based on comments that the employee perceives as discriminatory. See EEOC v. Brookdale Senior Living Communities, Inc., No. 2:20-cv-00993 (E.D. Cal.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sued Thompson Construction Group, Inc., for allegedly firing a black employee due to his race. The EEOC’s lawsuit claims that Thompson hired this employee to work as a pipefitter foreman to oversee a crew of pipe workers. Just a few months after he was hired, a white subordinate employee made derogatory and offensive comments to this foreman based on his race. Instead of terminating the Caucasian employee, Thompson Construction fired the African American pipefitter foreman. The EEOC is alleging that the pipefitter foreman was fired because of his race. This alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination based on race. See EEOC v. Thompson Construction Group, Inc., No. 1:20-cv-00406 (M.D.N.C.).
The EEOC recently sued a chain of fast food restaurants, Smashburger, for allegedly subjecting an employee to racial harassment. The EEOC’s lawsuit claims that one of its black employees was subjected to a racially hostile work environment by a general manager who made repeated offensive and demeaning racial comments about the black employee to his fiancée (another employee at the restaurant), such as making suggestions that she should break up with her fiancé because he is black. The lawsuit further alleges that the company took nearly a year after complaints started before it started conducting a serious investigation. This alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination and harassment against employees because of their race. See EEOC V. Icon Burger Acquisition, LLC d/b/a Smashburger, No. 2:20-cv-01601 (E.D.N.Y.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission settled a lawsuit against Porous Materials, Inc., in which the EEOC alleged that the company had harassed employees because of their race, sex, and national origin. The EEOC’s lawsuit claims that the company subjected its employees to sexism, racism, and national origin discrimination by a manager’s use of racial slurs, references to foreign-born employees as “terrorists,” and racist remarks to the company’s only black employee that involved a noose. This manager also complained that immigrants stole American jobs and told immigrant employees to leave America. The lawsuit also alleged that the manager made discriminatory comments about women and said that women could not perform a “man’s job.” This alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which prohibits race discrimination, national origin discrimination, and sex discrimination as well as harassment. See EEOC v. Porous Materials, Inc., No. 3:18-cv-01099 (N.D.N.Y.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission settled a lawsuit with General Board of Global Ministries of the United Methodist Church, in which the EEOC claimed that the company fired an employee in retaliation for complaints of race discrimination. The EEOC’s lawsuit alleges that Ivy Couch complained on multiple occasions to the company’s Human Resources Department that the company had discriminated against her due to her race and also retaliated against her for these complaints. Global Ministries fired her after she made these complaints. This alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits race discrimination and retaliation. See EEOC v. General Board of Global Ministries of the United Methodist Church, No. 1:19-CV-2989 (N.D. Ga.).
The EEOC reached a settlement with an oil and gas company, Murex. The EEOC claimed that Murex subjected one of its African-American employees to a racially hostile work environment. The EEOC’s lawsuit alleges that Murex’s employee, Derrick Jenkins, endured racial harassment from his co-workers during his employment in 2014. Jenkins’ co-workers called him offensive racial slurs such as “spade,” “spook,” and “Buckwheat.” In addition, the co-workers used other inappropriate racial terms such as “n***** rigged.” Jenkins supervisor observed the racial harassment but did nothing to stop it. In addition, the EEOC also alleged that another African-American employee for Murex complained to an executive at the company, but that that executive also did nothing to stop the harassment. Such alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Discrimination or harassment on the basis of race is illegal. See EEOC v. Murex Petroleum Corp., No. 1:18-cv-00169 (D.N.D.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission reached a settlement with MPW Industrial Services in a lawsuit in which the EEOC alleged that MPW discriminated against two African American employees because of their race. The EEOC’s lawsuit alleged that MPW had subjected the African American employees to racial harassment including racial epithets, racist comments, racist jokes, hangman’s nooses, and had an alleged KKK meeting at the work location. Such alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. See EEOC v. MPW Industrial Services, Inc., No. 1:18-cv-00063 (S.D. Ohio).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a lawsuit against a barbecue restaurant alleging that it subjected an African-American employee to a racially hostile work environment, which resulted in the employee’s constructive discharge. The EEOC’s lawsuit alleges that Shana Knox worked in the carryout area of the restaurant for about ten months. While working, a white co-worker made numerous offensive, inappropriate, and racist comments to Knox. Knox complained to management, but the comments and harassment did not stop. The lawsuit further alleges that Knox was constructively discharged after the white co-worker threw barbecue sauce at Knox and called her the N-word. Such alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which protects employees from a racially hostile work environment. See EEOC v. Joe's Old Fashioned Bar-B-Que, Inc., No. 5:18-cv-000180 (W.D.N.C.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission reached a $25,000 settlement with Floyd’s Equipment, which the EEOC alleged had discriminated and retaliated against an African American employee due to his race. The EEOC alleged that the company’s foreman repeatedly used the “n word” at work. One of Floyd’s African American employees complained about the racial slur and its use by the foreman. After the complaint was made, the foreman confronted him angrily, and the company then transferred the employee to a job in a different state performing work with a shovel (instead of a backhoe). Eventually, Floyd’s terminated the employee who had complained. Such alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII protects employees against discrimination based on numerous protected classes, including race. See EEOC v. Floyd's Equipment, Inc., No. 1:17-cv-00175 (E.D. Mo.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently filed a lawsuit against Aaron’s, Inc., a nationwide store of rent-to-own products. The lawsuit alleges that certain supervisors racially harassed African American employees by openly and regularly used offensive racial slurs including “n*****” and “monkey." The Complaint further claims that African Americans were treated worse than non-African American employees by being given more difficult tasks than others. Discrimination on the basis of an employee’s race is illegal pursuant to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. See EEOC v. Aaron's, Inc., No. 1:17-cv-07273 (E.D.N.Y.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently announced that Reliable Nissan agreed to settle charges of discrimination alleging race discrimination, national origin discrimination, religious discrimination, and retaliation. Employees claimed that two managers from the company repeatedly used the “n-word” during a meeting and used derogatory terms to refer to African-American, Native American, Muslim, and Hispanic employees. The employees alleged that the managers also made offensive jokes about the religious practices of Muslim and Native American employees, and that the workplace included offensive pictures towards minority employees. The employees further claimed that the managers used offensive terms including “n*****,” “drunken Indians,” and “redskins.” The alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Discrimination against employees on the basis of their race, religion, or national origin is illegal. It is also illegal to retaliate against employees who complain about such discrimination. The EEOC reported that Reliable Nissan agreed to pay $205,000 total to three employees who filed allegations of discrimination. See https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/10-11-17.cfm
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently filed a lawsuit against Aqua Resources alleging that the company discriminated against African-American employees by subjecting them to a racially hostile work environment and then firing an employee after he complained about the harassment. A supervisor, who was Caucasian, made repeated derogatory comments and jokes to African American employees that were racially offensive. The comments and jokes included comments such as “n*****,” “monkey,” and “boy.” The EEOC also alleges that a supervisor told a white employee not to “n***** the truck up.” Aqua Resources did not stop the harassment after receiving a complaint. Instead, Aqua Resources actually promoted a wrongdoer, placed the wrongdoer as a supervisor over the complaining employee on a project, and then firing the complaining employee. See EEOC v. Aqua America, Inc., No. 2:17-cv-04346 (E.D. Pa.).
A company will reportedly pay $30,000 to settle a racial harassment lawsuit that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission brought. The lawsuit claims that the company did not appropriately respond to complaints by an African-American employee that he was experiencing pervasive discrimination from his coworkers. The coworkers allegedly made comments such as “you people,” “black people are lazy” and “I better watch my wallet around you.” See EEOC v. Gonnella Baking Co., No. 15-cv-4892 (N.D. Ill.).
The EEOC recently settled a lawsuit for $50,000, which alleged that the defendants fired an African-American employee and demoted three other African-American employees because of their race. The plaintiff alleged that the company’s manager told an African-American manager that the company wanted to “sprinkle a little salt” on the worksite (meaning replacing black employees with “whites and Mexicans”). The African-American manager was demoted just a few days later and replaced with a Hispanic manager. The Hispanic manager fired three African-American employees and replaced them with a Hispanic and two Caucasian employees. These alleged actions are a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. See EEOC v. OnSite Solutions, LLC, No. 5:15-cv-01066 (W.D. Okla.).
A manufacturing company has reportedly agreed to pay $19,500 to settle a race discrimination lawsuit brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The lawsuit alleges that the company hired a white employee instead of a biracial (African-American and white) employee because of his race. The lawsuit alleged that the biracial applicant was qualified, had previous experience, and passed job-related assessment tests. Making a hiring decision based upon an applicant’s race is prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. See Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Windings, Inc., No. 15-cv-02901 (D. Minn.).
Employer Calling Employees Ignorant, Lazy or Stupid Because Of Their Country Creates a Hostile Work Environment
The EEOC recently filed a lawsuit against Glaser Organic Farms, alleging that Glaser subjected its kitchen employees to a hostile work environment because of the employees’ national origin and race. The lawsuit also included a retaliation charge as a result of Glaser terminating an employee for filling a discrimination charge with the EEOC. The EEOC’s suit alleges that a kitchen manager created a hostile work environment for Hispanic employees by making disparaging comments such as “You Mexicans are ignorant, “Mexicans are lazy,” and “Mexicans are stupid.” Glaser fired the employee who filed a discrimination charge with the EEOC. This conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination based on race and national origin, and prohibits an employer from retaliating against employees who oppose this type of discrimination. See EEOC v. Glaser, No. 1:15-cv-23642 (S.D. Fla.).