Allied Aviation Services Inc., a New York-based provider of fuel services, settled an EEOC lawsuit for $1.9 million, following claims of persistent race discrimination at its facility at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport.
The lawsuit was filed on behalf of 15 black and Hispanic workers who were subjected to verbal abuse and other harassment. Racist graffiti, including swastikas and the “n” word, was commonplace, the employees said. One manager kept a cartoon belittling Hispanic workers under glass on his desk for months. Co-workers made references to the “back of the bus” and “going back to Africa,” and a “hit list” of black employees was kept, the lawsuit alleged.
Suzanne Anderson, an attorney for the EEOC, said the case was “repulsive” not only because of the nature of the harassment, but also because of “ ’s acquiescence to the harassment.”
Note: Companies are not automatically liable for everything their employees do. But once an employee complains of harassment, the responsibility shifts to the employer. A prompt response can spare your company an expensive lawsuit.
- Avoiding the 4 deadly sins of performance reviews
- Employee wants transfer to avoid harassment? Be sure to note that she requested it
- Lack of female supervisors a red flag for discrimination
- Lawful Off-Duty Activities Statute requires caution before discharge
- Follow basic rules for job descriptions, interviews to avoid hiring bias