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Bryant Whitten, LLP

Lawsuit alleges employment discrimination based on gender, race

In California, as in all other states across the nation, workplace discrimination based on race or gender is illegal. In another state, though, after years of alleged employment discrimination, a police sergeant has filed a lawsuit for the poor treatment she continues to receive from her employers and co-workers. Her numerous complaints range from claims of being passed over for promotion to supervisors instructing her to style her hair differently.

The civil suit, filed on Jan. 31, claims that when the woman was initially promoted to sergeant, she did not receive a sergeant's salary. Additionally, despite having received one of the highest departmental promotion test scores, four white males have been promoted to lieutenant ahead of her. This, the complaint alleges, is due to the fact that she is an African American woman.

Prior to this lawsuit, the sergeant also had to twice file complaints with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission – complaints which were found to be valid on both occasions. Despite the EEOC finding in her favor and awarding back pay for the racial and gender discrimination to which she was subjected, the discrimination persists. She had been told that, when she returned from maternity leave, she would be able to keep her early shift – a schedule more suitable to allowing her to care for her newborn -- but was then assigned a later shift that significantly hindered her childcare ability. She was also denied the opportunity to pump breast milk as often as necessary, leading to physical pain, among other complications.

In fact, the complaints listed above are only some of the many injustices to which the woman was allegedly subjected. If any woman in California believes she has been similarly discriminated against based on her gender or race, she should know that these actions are illegal and that she has the right to seek the legal counsel of an attorney. A lawyer with experience in employment law cases can offer counsel and insight into the legal rights of women in the workplace and help protect against employment discrimination.

Source: nj.com, "Hillside cop endured years of racial, gender discrimination, suit says", Jessica Remo, Feb. 21, 2017

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