Tag Archives: bully

Black employees file discrimination lawsuit against Harbor UCLA Medical Center

Four African-American employees have filed an employment discrimination lawsuit against Harbor UCLA Medical Center.  The employees, Zena Branson, Laverne Geh, Vickie Moore and Brenda Lee-Richardson, allege that their boss, Candyce Gray, subjected them to a hostile work environment where they suffered from harassment and were discriminated against because of their race.

The lawsuit alleges that Gray referred to African-American employees as “those people,” mocked their speech, and called them derogatory terms such as”lazy” and “uneducated.”  Candyce Gray allegedly repeatedly slammed doors in the plaintiffs’ faces and threw objects at them.

Under Candyce Gray’s supervision, other employees would refer to the African-American employees as “monkeys” and would tell them to “go back to their cages.”  Management allegedly did nothing to stop this harassment.

The lawsuit also alleges that the Harbor UCLA Medical Center disciplined African-American employees without cause, gave them lower scores on their performance evaluations, and hid promotional opportunities from black employees.

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School bus company Berry Services sued for sexual harassment

In late September, the EEOC filed a lawsuit against New Orleans-based school bus provider Berry Services Inc. for retaliating against employees who complained about sexual harassment.

The owner of Berry Services, Milton Berry, has been accused of sexual harassment by at least three female employees during 2003-2007. 

One of the alleged victims, Lakisha Baker, claims that Berry sexually propositioned and touched her on her first day of work in November 2006 and then harassed her on a daily basis until firing her in February 2007 in retaliation after Baker refused Berry’s order to call him to discuss having sex. 

The lawsuit states that “on one occasion Mr. Berry pulled her pants down and tried to touch her” and that Berry also offered Baker a promotion or salary increase in exchange for oral sex.

Michelle Butler, senior trial attorney for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, said that although none of the alleged incidents of sexual harassment occurred in the presence of school students, she was still concerned that “he is providing service to where he would have access to children.”

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Mercedes dealership ex-employee alleges racial harassment

Garland Latta, 41, who is black, filed a lawsuit against Mercedes-Benz of Anaheim after he was subjected to workplace bullying on the part of his coworkers and managers.  Latta began working at the dealership in November 2008, and he alleges that the first incident of racial harassment occurred one month later.

According to the lawsuit, Latta was called a “monkey” and was told, “You eat like a (n-word).”  Despite the fact that Latta complained to managers about the harassment and hostile work environment, they refused to discipline the employees who bullied Latta.  In one instance, a manager responded by telling Latta, “You brought this on yourself.  Should everyone watch what they say around you?”

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Former Editor sues New York Post for discrimination and harassment

Sandra Guzman, an Emmy award winning journalist and former editor at the New York Post, filed a lawsuit against the newspaper for having created a racially hostile work environment and for unlawfully retaliating against Guzman after she complained about the alleged discriminatory treatment and after she publicly opposed a controversial political cartoon about US President Barack Obama.  Guzman was fired from the NY Post on September 29, 2009.

The lawsuit states that “behind the trumpeted headlines and within the four walls of the Post exists a hostile work environment where female employees and employees of color have been subjected to pervasive and systemic discrimination and/or unlawful harassment based on their gender, race, color and/or national origin.  The Post, and its parent corporation, News Corporation maintain, condone, tolerate, directly participate in and contribute to a hostile work environment.”

Guzman accused NY Post editor-in-chief Col Allan of having “actively and directly participated in the discrimination, harassment and unlawful retaliation committed against (Guzman).”  The lawsuit also states that “Allan’s repeated inappropriate and sexist comments and conduct have been widely known throughout the Company.”  For example, the lawsuit accuses Allan of showing Guzman and three other female employees pictures of a naked man on his cellphone and asking them what they thought of the picture.

The lawsuit also accuses Les Goodstein, the Senior Vice President of News Corp., of sexually harassing Guzman by repeatedly telling her that she looked “sexy” and “beautiful” and by referring to her as “Cha Cha #1.”

Guzman alleges that her numerous complaints about the workplace bullying were ignored by company management.

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Administaff and Conn-X sued by EEOC for anti-Semitic workplace bullying

The EEOC filed a lawsuit against staffing company Administaff, Inc. and Conn-X, LLC, a cable service provider in Baltimore, for subjecting Jewish employees to religious discrimination and workplace bullying.

The lawsuit claims that the two companies subjected Scott Jacobson and Joey Jacobson, who are brothers, to physical and verbal harassment and a hostile work environment because of their religion, Judaism. The victims claim that from September 2005 and continuing for several years, they were called “dirty Jew,” “dumb Jew,” and other anti-Semitic slurs by managers and coworkers.

The physical harassment included an incident in which Scott Jacobson’s work vehicle was defaced with a swastika and an incident in which he was forced into a trash dumpster for the amusement of managers, who observed the entire incident on a work surveillance camera. 

“The harassment here was cruel and callous,” said Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Acting Chairman Stuart J. Ishimaru. “The use of the swastika is an especially egregious and provocative act, and the anti-Semitic epithets and physical violence alleged here are also outrageous. The EEOC will act, and act forcefully, to rectify this kind of workplace abuse.”

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Cheesecake Factory pays $345,000 to settle male-on-male sexual harassment lawsuit

The EEOC announced that Cheesecake Factory Inc has agreed to pay $345,000 to six male employees who were allegedly sexually harassed by other male kitchen workers at the Cheesecake Factory restaurant in Chandler, Arizona.

The EEOC lawsuit claimed that the workplace bullies touched the victims inappropriately, made inappropriate sexual comments, and forced the victims into repeated incidents of simulated rape.  In one instance, managers allegedly witnessed employees dragging the male victims kicking and screaming into a refrigerated room.

Mary Jo O’Neill, regional attorney of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission district office in Phoenix, said, “The evidence was clear, and everyone knew about it. Beyond the lavish decor that the company boasts on its website was a horribly dysfunctional workplace where male workers lived in fear.”

Cheesecake Factory restaurant in Chandler, AZ

Cheesecake Factory restaurant in Chandler, AZ

Despite the fact that the victims, Bryce Fitzpatrick, Albert Miller, Jesse DeJong, Michael Wilson, John Andrew, and Julio Muñoz, complained to almost every manager at the restaurant, but none of the managers did anything to stop the workplace bullying.

One victim eventually called the police and reported the hostile work environment and sexual harassment.  Chandler police investigated the incidents but did not file any charges.

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