“Get Out – We’re Having a Klan Meeting!”

Seems that I almost can’t keep up with the number of racial harassment cases in the news these days. I just did a post about nooses and the N-word … and now a new one with similar – but more – epithets and threats.

The EEOC just announced that it sued an Arizona moving company for hostile work environment based upon allegations made about a supervisor’s outrageous comments.

It was alleged that he frequently used comments such as “white power,” “if you’re not white, you’re not right,” as well as that old standby – the N-word – when referring to an employee.

He also told a black employee to “get out of a room because they were having a Klan meeting.”

And to top it off, it was alleged that “a troll doll was painted black, a Post-it was affixed to the troll doll, which read [the name of the black employee] and the doll was hung in the middle of the facility.”

The employee complained within the company about the troll doll, but no action was taken.

Said an EEOC attorney:  “We are particularly concerned that he was subjected to language and conduct by his supervisors that attempts to assert white superiority over African-Americans. Employers and supervisors have a legal duty to create a safe workplace environment for their employees.”

Takeaway:  No action was taken by the employer.


As the EEOC attorney said:  “Employers and supervisors have a legal duty to create a safe workplace environment for their employees.”


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Richard Cohen

Richard B. Cohen is a partner in the New York City office of FisherBroyles, LLP, a national law firm. Richard Cohen has litigated and arbitrated complex corporate, commercial and employment disputes for more than 35 years, and is a trusted advisor to business owners and in-house counsel both in the United States and internationally. His clients have included Fortune 100 companies, domestic and foreign commercial and investment banks, Pacific-rim corporations and real estate development companies, as well as start-up businesses throughout the United States. Email Richard at [email protected]