Category Archives:Workplace Discrimination


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Paula Deen Workplace Discrimination Lawsuit

Paula Deen is an American celebrity chef, former cooking show host, restaurateur, author, actress and Emmy Award-winning television personality. Recently, Deen has suffered a tremendous fall out based on allegations of racism stemming from a controversy regarding Deen’s admission, during a deposition for a lawsuit, that she had used racial slurs.

The accusations against Deen stem from a lawsuit filed by a former manager of Deen’s restaurants in Savannah, Georgia. Lisa T. Jackson’s lawsuit alleges that Deen and her brother, Bubba Hier, committed numerous acts of violence, discrimination and racism that resulted in the end of Jackson’s five-year tenure at Deen’s Lady & Sons and Uncle Bubba’s Oyster House eateries in Savannah. Deen rejects the allegations.

In a deposition for the lawsuit, Deen was asked whether she had ever used the “N-word.” Deen answered that she had probably used the racial slur when talking to her husband about “when a black man burst into the bank that I was working at and put a gun to my head” — an incident that took place 30 years ago.

Jackson’s lawsuit also claims Deen wanted to plan a party in the style of a Southern plantation, staffed with black waiters dressed to resemble slaves. In her disposition, Deen said she was speaking of an experience she had had in which the wait staff composed of black men in white jackets and bow ties, and that she had said she would love for Hier to “experience a very Southern style wedding” such as that.

Amid the firestorm, The Food Network dropped did, as did Smithfield Foods, one of her key sponsors. There are questions now over whether other businesses, including QVC and Walmart, may cut ties with Deen.

If you have ever been a victim of workplace discrimination, and are afraid to speak out against your employer’s illegal employment practices, our firm can assist you in the successful resolution of your matter. Our firm handles cases for both employees and employers, allowing Don Ho Law to have a unique perspective on every type of employment law matter. Call us today at 714-748-7715 for a free consultation.

Published by Don Ho Law. Don Ho is an experienced criminal defense and employment law attorney in Riverside and Orange County, California.

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LAPD Officer wins $1.2million Discrimination Lawsuit

A black Los Angeles police officer was awarded $1.2 million by a jury this week in a suit alleging racial discrimination and harassment against the city and department.
 
Officer Earl Wright, a 23-year veteran on the force, said he faced discrimination and harassment at the department dating back to 2009, but that the department didn’t take complaints seriously, which caused him to be hospitalized and miss seven months of work because of stress and anxiety.
 
Alleged instances of discrimination include those from high-ranking officers. In November 2009, Sgt. Peter Foster, a white officer, called Wright back from the field to present him with a cake for his 20-year anniversary with the department. The cake was topped with a fried chicken leg and a slice of watermelon. In September 2009, photos of Wright and his partner’s faces were superimposed on a “Sanford and Son” poster that was plastered around the department and called a family portrait.
 
The Los Angeles Superior Court jury deliberated less than four hours before announcing its verdict following Wright’s four day trial. In Wright’s case, the jury awarded $600,000 for past economic damages and $600,000 for future damages, Smith said.
 
The case is the latest in a series of big figure settlements and jury awards in cases brought by LAPD officers against the department. Last week, City Council approved a $1.25 million payout to a current and a former officer who said their supervisor repeatedly harassed them because they are lesbians.
 
If you have been the victim of workplace discrimination based on your race, sex, or gender and fearful of speaking out because of employer retaliation, Don Ho Law can fight for you!
 
Published by DonHo Law. Don Ho is a criminal defense and employment law attorney in Orange County, California. 

Former Reporter Sues KTLA for Workplace Discrimination

Kurt the CyberGuy, real name Kirt Knutsson, filed a lawsuit against KTLA, the Tribune TV station in Los Angeles, and at least eight other TV stations, for breach of contract, misappropriation of his name and likeness, unfair competition and age discrimination.

Knutsson says in the suit that he started his relationship with KTLA in 1995 after he established himself as an expert reporter on technology. He agreed to provide his services and reporting in return for exposure and technical support, for less than his usual fee. Within two years, his reports were also being syndicated to about two dozen other TV stations.

He signed a five-year deal with KTLA in 2008, but in December 2010, Knutsson says his contract was suddenly terminated. He says two KTLA executives told him they would renegotiate but he would be paid less. Instead, in February 2011, he got a phone call from KTLA news director Jason Ball and Tribune human resources who told him he would no longer appear on the station at all, and that they would notify the other stations that his relationship with them had come to an end.

Despite being let go, Knutsson says his name and image continued for some time on the TV station’s websites, but when a viewer clicked on the link, they were shown consumer technology reports by Rich DeMuro instead, that were broadcast from the same studio as CyberGuy, with the same format and style. Knuttson charges “the decision to terminate Knutsson’s employment was motivated … particularly during the last years of his employment by a company bias against age, specifically with regard to on-air talent.”

If you have been the victim of workplace discrimination based on your sex, race, or gender, contact Don Ho Law today for assistance with your case.

Published by Don Ho Law. Don Ho is a criminal defense and employment law attorney in Orange County, CA. 


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