A state-by-state review of court cases pertaining to workplace rights.
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Chicken processor to pay $40,000 to settle EEOC retaliation lawsuit
Source: RP News Wires, Reliable Plant
Date: August 4, 2010
The EEOC had charged in its lawsuit that Mountaire Farms violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 when it gave an employee a negative performance evaluation and then fired her in retaliation for her complaints about racial discrimination.
$1.4 million payout approved in police discrimination suit
O?Sullivan, News Journal
Date: September 22, 2005
A federal judge formally ended the nearly five-year-old federal discrimination lawsuit against the Delaware State Police by approving a $1.4 million payout. In approving the settlement that was mutually agreed to by federal prosecutors and state officials, U.S. District Judge Kent A. Jordan addressed several letters sent to the court that objected to terms. Jordan said many of the 104 African Americans who failed the test between 1992 and 1998 proved the test was a failure by going on to become well-regarded law enforcement officers with other agencies.
Accountability on trial
Source: Ben White, Washington Post
Date: October 21, 2004
[A] case which has been meandering toward trial for seven years pits shareholders of the Walt Disney Co. against nearly two dozen current and former Disney directors over a severance package valued at roughly $140 million paid in 1997 to Hollywood super-agent Michael Ovitz. The stakes in the trial are enormous. For corporate directors, it could set a significant precedent, possibly opening the door for scores of other lawsuits against board members for failing to exercise proper oversight over corporate management. The fact that the Disney case made it into court, a rarity, shows that judges are reacting to the rash of business scandals.
Smyrna firm sued by feds: discrimination alleged against black workers
Eldred, Delaware State News, Newszap
Date: October 3, 2004
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has filed a federal lawsuit claiming that a Smyrna [Delaware] business intentionally discriminated against a black employee and "a class of African-American" co-workers. The complaint, filed Sept. 23 in U.S. District Court in Wilmington, alleges the P.T. Morgan Paper Co., of 33 E. South St., Smyrna, violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 when a white supervisor made "racially offensive comments, taunts and threats" to Anthony Moore and others. The EEOC complaint says Mr. Moore and others complained repeatedly to management about the racially hostile work environment, but that the company failed to take any remedial action to stop the alleged harassment.
MBNA sued over alleged insults
Source: Ted Griffith, News
Date: June 24, 2004
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sued MBNA Corp. on Wednesday, alleging the credit card giant failed to stop "a barrage of racial and ethnic insults directed at Indian and black employees." According to a suit filed in federal court in Wilmington, MBNA managers ignored employee complaints about the discrimination, which allegedly included racially derogatory comments that followed the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
Comcast faces racial bias suits
Source: Steven Church, News
Date: June 18, 2004
Federal officials sued Comcast Corp. Thursday, accusing the country's biggest cable company of firing a Wilmington human resources manager after she said the company had discriminated against [her] and fired her boss for defending her. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is suing on behalf of [the woman] because it believes she was denied a promotion on the basis of her race and was fired for filing a discrimination complaint.
Del. to pay $90,000 in discrimination suit: no wrongdoing admitted in case of woman denied Correction job
Source: Mary Allen, News Journal
Date: June 1, 2004
Delaware has agreed to pay $90,000 to settle a federal discrimination lawsuit by a Department of Correction employee who alleged that she was denied a promotion because she is a woman.
School, Diocese Sued for Firing Teacher for Pro-Choice Views
Source: Jennifer Batchelor, Delaware Law
Date: November 21, 2003
A lawsuit initiated by a teacher who was fired after signing a pro-choice advertisement has pitted the right of a private school to determine who it wants on staff against the plaintiff's right to speak out in favor of abortion rights. In a complaint filed in the U.S. District Court in Wilmington on Nov. 7, plaintiff Michele Curay-Cramer alleged that her former employer, The Ursuline Academy of Wilmington, Delaware Inc., and the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act by terminating her employment. The legal dispute stems from a full-page ad that ran in the Jan. 22, 2003, issue of The News Journal to coincide with the 30th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Roe v. Wade. The ad, which was signed by more than 600 people, including the plaintiff and Delaware Gov. Ruth Ann Minner, asserted that a woman's right to make her own reproductive choices was "under attack," the complaint said.
Jury Sought to Hear Bias Suit
Source: Mary Allen, Delaware News
Date: November 5, 2003
A jury should decide whether state police can be held liable for two Delaware troopers' claims they were denied promotions because they are white, a defense attorney wrote in court papers. Senior Cpls. William Bullen, 47, and Jeffrey Giles, 40, asked a U.S. District Court judge in September to determine - without a trial - that the agency discriminated against them and should be held liable. But Philadelphia defense attorney Edward T. Ellis has asked the court to reject that request and force the troopers to prove their claims to a jury. Ellis said the legal arguments laid out by the troopers' attorney, Thomas S. Neuberger, are based on circumstantial evidence. His clients deny discriminating against the troopers, who claim they were not promoted to sergeant between October and December 2001 because they are white.
Fairness of Police Exam Up to Judge
Source: Mary Allen, The News
Date: August 21, 2003
A decision on whether Delaware State Police set the passing score on a literacy test at a level that discriminated against black trooper applicants now rests with a federal judge. An attorney defending Delaware against a U.S. Justice Department lawsuit argued Wednesday that 75 percent was an appropriate cutoff to ensure job applicants possessed minimum qualifications. Even if people who could do the job failed because of that cutoff, the result was justifiable because of the importance of public safety, attorney Wayne S. Flick told U.S. District Judge Kent A. Jordan, who presided over the six-day nonjury trial. "Setting cutoff scores involves drawing lines, and you have to draw that line now," Flick said.
Bear Pharmacy Sued by EEOC
Source: Sean O'Sullivan, Wilmington News Journal
Date: August 7, 2003
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is suing the Rite Aid Pharmacy in Bear for violating the rights of a Muslim employee. The lawsuit, filed this week in U.S. District Court in Wilmington, charges that store managers fired Zarin Din when she asked to have a day off to observe a holiday that marks the end of Ramadan, a month of fasting during daylight hours for Muslims. According to the lawsuit, supervisors gave the 49-year-old Wilmington resident no explanation for her termination in 2002 and refused to transfer her to another store.
Wilmington Workers File Discrimination Suit
Source: Sean O'Sullivan, News
Date: August 5, 2003
Ten current and former Wilmington government employees have filed a federal lawsuit charging the city with reverse discrimination. The group of white and Hispanic plaintiffs, who work or worked in the city's public works and parks departments, said in the lawsuit that they were passed over for promotions or discriminated against in favor of black employees from approximately the mid-1990s to the present. At least two claim they were fired because of their race. The group's attorney, Philip B. Bartoshesky, said six of the plaintiffs still work for the city full time and one works part time.