Hostile Work Environment

A recent district court decision, Patrick v. Garlick, No. 13-CV-6365L, 2014 WL 6883634 (W.D.N.Y. Dec. 4, 2014), explains the differences between federal and state anti-discrimination law  regarding individual liability of the alleged harasser. There, plaintiffs, employees of Seneca Lake State Park, sued Steve Garlick (the park’s branch manager and the plaintiffs’ supervisor), alleging that Garlick subjected them…

Read More Court Explains Individual Liability Under State Human Rights Law
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Here is the complaint recently filed by plaintiff Michael Douglas against Bleecker Kitchen & Co. and its co-owner (and owner of Gold Bar) Joshua Berkowitz. Plaintiff – who is bi-racial (mixed Black and Asian Asian ancestry) – asserts, among other things, that Berkowitz made derogatory comments about black people, in violation of the New York City…

Read More Race Discrimination/Hostile Work Environment Lawsuit Against Bleecker Kitchen and Owner Joshua Berkowitz
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In Nelson v. Vigorito, the Appellate Division, Second Department affirmed the denial of summary judgment to defendants on plaintiff’s claim of sexual harassment based on a hostile work environment under the New York State Human Rights Law. Here are the facts, as summarized by the court: The plaintiff, a former employee of the defendant Security…

Read More Sexual Harassment/Hostile Work Environment Claims Continue Against Long Island Car Dealership
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In a lawsuit captioned Misas v. North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System and Julio Cardoza, SDNY 14-cv-8787 (filed Nov. 4, 2014), plaintiffs allege that defendants North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System and Julio Cardoza subjected them to harassment, discrimination, a hostile work environment and retaliation. They assert, for example, that a supervisor told one plaintiff…

Read More Sausages, Pornography, Witchcraft, and Spanking: Sexual Harassment Lawsuit Against Lenox Hill Hospital
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In Satina v. NYC Human Resources Admin., the Southern District of New York held that plaintiff adequately stated claims for discrimination (unequal pay due to her gender) and retaliation under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the New York State Human Rights Law, and the New York City Human Rights Law. Plaintiff…

Read More Court Provides Roadmap For Pleading “Unequal Gender Pay” Discrimination Claims
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In Scott-Iverson v. Independent Health Ass’n., 13-cv-0451 (W.D.N.Y. July 7, 2014), the court adopted a report and recommendation that plaintiff’s race- and sex-based hostile work environment claims may proceed. Plaintiff alleged, among other things, that: In approximately October 1999, [the Defendant] held an employee appreciation day around Halloween and [one of Plaintiff’s co-workers] dressed up…

Read More Offensive “Aunt Jemima” Halloween Costume Supports Hostile Work Environment/Race Discrimination Claim
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In Santiesteban v. Nestle Waters North America, Inc. (decided Oct. 15, 2014), the Eastern District of New York denied defendant’s motion for summary judgment on plaintiff’s claims of discrimination and hostile work environment (based on religion). As to plaintiff’s discrimination claim, the court held: [T]he comments that “you people are manipulative,” that “Plaintiff manipulated … Cappetta…

Read More Evidence of Derogatory Comments About Jews Leads to Denial of Summary Judgment in Employment Discrimination Case
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A recent Eastern District decision, Delisi v. National Ass’n of Professional Women, illustrates the circumstances under which an individual defendant – here, defendant’s general counsel – may be liable under the “aiding and abetting” and retaliation provisions of the New York State Human Rights Law (NYSHRL). Generally, plaintiff asserted that she was subjected to sexual harassment, and…

Read More Company’s Alleged Failure to Investigate Discrimination Complaint Supported “Aiding and Abetting” and Retaliation Claims
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Here is the recent employment discrimination lawsuit filed against HSBC, captioned Michael Preston v. HSBC Securities (USA) Inc., 14-cv-8402. Plaintiff alleges, among other things, that he was sexually harassed by a gay co-worker – which involved explicit requests for sexual favors, physically touching and fondling plaintiff, and sexual remarks about plaintiff’s penis – and then fired a…

Read More Sexual Harassment/Hostile Work Environment Lawsuit Against HSBC
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