Mareo R. Allen will get his job back at Mike Enyart & Sons Inc., after the construction firm—located in South Point, near the West Virginia border—agreed to settle an EEOC race discrimination suit filed on Allen’s behalf.
Allen alleged he was fired in retaliation for complaining about racial harassment while working on a sewer-line installation project in White Sulphur Springs, W.V. According to the EEOC, Allen’s foreman and co-workers “repeatedly used racially offensive epithets and slurs to Allen and other black persons.”
The suit also alleged co-workers harassed Allen by cutting his belt while he was wearing it and showing him a swastika that had been spray-painted on a piece of company equipment.
The company agreed to enter into a five-year consent decree that calls for paying Allen $87,205 and rehiring him. The company must also distribute an anti-discrimination policy, develop procedures for handling harassment complaints and train all supervisors how to recognize racial harassment and discrimination on the job.
Note: Ignoring harassment can be costly. Retaliating against those who complain can break the bank.
- Close skills gap with training, pay, planning
- Merely transferring employee to same or similar position isn't grounds for lawsuit
- Make sure your policy is understood before rejecting applicants because of bankruptcy
- Uniform rules: Police can ban religious garb if there's a public-policy reason
- OK to label attendance an essential function