Tag Archives: race discrimination

U.S. Supreme Court Denies Petition Seeking to Scrap McDonnell Douglas Burden-Shifting Analysis

Arguing the decades-old analysis is no longer helpful to anyone, Reginald Sprowl petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to scrap application of the McDonnell Douglas burden-shifting analysis in Title VII race discrimination and retaliation claims. On January 19, 2021, the Supreme Court rejected Sprowl’s petition and denied certiorari. Sprowl v. Mercedes-Benz U.S. Int’l, Inc., 815 Fed. … Continue Reading

Is One Enough? Employee Asks U.S. Supreme Court if Single Utterance of Racial Slur Creates Hostile Work Environment

Is a single utterance of an offensive racial slur – specifically the “N-word” – enough to create a hostile work environment under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964? A Black operating room aide in Dallas, Texas, has petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to decide the question. The petition references a circuit-split on … Continue Reading

How to Minimize Exposure to Jury Verdicts with Internal Investigations

It is more important than ever that employers conduct internal investigations of workplace complaints and take appropriate action when there is cause to do so. Proper investigations and thorough pre-litigation assessments can help employers minimize exposure to unfavorable jury verdicts and awards. A case from the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, in which … Continue Reading

Massachusetts Jury Returns Unprecedented $28 Million Verdict for Retaliation Claim

A Suffolk County jury recently awarded a Haitian–American nurse an unprecedented $28.2 million in total damages on her claim of retaliation against Brigham & Women’s Hospital, her former employer. At the same time, the jury rejected the nurse’s claim of race discrimination. This verdict serves to emphasize what most employment litigators know from experience: juries … Continue Reading

Reward for Highest Score: No Promotion, But $1.2 Million Jury Verdict

A long-time New Jersey police department employee applies for a promotion to captain. On the promotional exam, he scores higher than any other applicant. He isn’t promoted. His consolation prize, however, is a jury verdict of more than $1.2 million in state court last month. In Downing v. Borough of Roselle and Chief Gerald Orlando, Bradley … Continue Reading
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