Facebook has been sued by two employees after not responding to their repeated complaints of workplace harassment at a company data center in North Carolina. CNET reports that the race discrimination lawsuit filed on November 22, 2016 in US District Court for the Northern District of California alleges that Facebook allowed retaliation against two black employees who reported discrimination "to fester and continue" despite the workers' many complaints.
Race Discrimination Allegations Against Facebook
Robert Baron Duffy, a former Facebook employee, and Robert Louis Gary, a maintenance worker at Facebook, claimed that a facility manager used "racial slurs when referring to black employees." Both Duffy and Gary are black. The lawsuit also alleges that they were paid less than white employees who perform the same job duties. Duffy also claimed that he left the company in October after he was stripped of a slew of his usual duties and confronted with systemic racism.
Facebook Claims Lawsuit Allegations are Without Merit
The lawsuit states that after Duffy and Gary informed Facebook's Human Resources departments of the workplace racial harassment, the tech company conducted several investigations to address the claims. But the plaintiffs say that the investigations did not serve to address their complaints.
A Facebook spokesperson has said that the discrimination lawsuit claims were without merit and that Facebook would mount a "vigorous defense" and that the company had terminated the troublesome supervisor who was using racial slurs. The spokesperson went on to say that Facebook is an "equal opportunity employer" and the company does not "tolerate discrimination, harassment, or retaliation."
Complaint Cites Facebook Diversity Report Statistics
The introduction of the race discrimination lawsuit shares statistics that Facebook reported itself in June, citing that only 2 percent of Facebook employees are black and that 3 percent of those employees hold leadership positions. This year's Facebook diversity report also shows that the company is trailing behind other tech companies in the rate at which it employs minorities.
Facebook Could Be Violating the Civil Rights Act
The race discrimination lawsuit alleges that the acts of Facebook, two managers at the North Carolina data center, and some other unnamed Facebook employees violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII outlaws discrimination based on race, color, religion sex, or national origin.
The race discrimination complaint against Facebook asks for more than $25,000 in compensatory and punitive damages per plaintiff.
Facebook Race Discrimination Lawsuit: For Further Reading
- Facebook Hit with Lawsuit Over Alleged Race Discrimination via Fortune.com
- Facebook Slapped with Racial Discrimination Suit via CNET.com
- Facebook Faces Workplace Racial Discrimination Complaint via Inside Counsel
- Two Rutherford men file lawsuit against Facebook, alleging racial discrimination via The Digital Courier
Race discrimination in the workplace violates California and federal employment laws. Our passionate California workplace discrimination attorneys are here to fight for your rights. Contact us for a free consultation today.