Boss, employee of different races? That’s not bias

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources

Most workplaces now reflect the nation’s increasing diversity. Don’t let that worry you. An employee can’t sue just because a ­manager who makes employment decisions belongs to a different racial group.

Recent case: Bryan, who is black, sued when he was fired for job abandonment after he took FMLA leave. He alleged that his white supervisor and the company’s white HR manager terminated him because of his race.

The court tossed out the claim. It reasoned that the mere fact that Bryan is black and the decision-makers are white didn’t automatically mean Bryan had been discriminated against. (Grenion v. Farmers Insur­­ance Exchange, No. 12-CV-3219, ED NY, 2013)

Final note: Bryan’s FMLA case continues, since he presented evidence he took leave and wasn’t allowed to return. The employer will have to prove he abandoned his job.

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