Standing Strong For Employee Rights

Los Angeles woman sues city over discrimination and harassment

| Oct 9, 2019 | Firm News |

If a worker in California feels they are being discriminated against or harassed at the workplace, they have the right to bring attention to their supervisor about the issue or to request help. When those claims and warnings are ignored, however, the situation can spiral out of control and both the organization and the employee may find themselves in court. According to the Los Angeles Times, this is the case of a Muslim woman who worked for the L.A. Department of Water and Power and claims she spent several years dealing with discrimination, retaliation and harassment.

The woman has filed a suit against the entity because she claims she was subjected to derogatory comments about her religion for several years. She even went so far as to claim that she was prevented from promotion within the department and was retaliated against when she reported wasteful contracts. A suit against the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing was also filed.

She claims she was regularly compared to terrorists, her accent was mocked and was told her colleagues were disappointed she was hired. As other employees got involved, the situation got worse and the comment more frequent. Although she made several complaints to her superiors at the department, they were all ignored. The lawsuit also names four of her co-workers.

The day she filed her lawsuit and reported the harassment, a co-worker visited her cubicle with security guards saying she should be evaluated by a counselor. Although she left rather than create a scene, her lawsuit mentions that security should not have been involved in the incident and they may have been used to manipulate the situation. The department declined to comment to the paper about her discrimination claims.