From labor disputes cases to labor and employment publications, for your research, you’ll find solutions on Bloomberg Law®. Protect your clients by developing strategies based on Litigation...
Sept. 2 — A black George Washington University police supervisor who allegedly harassed lesbian officers must do more than claim his comments were innocent or misinterpreted in order to challenge his discharge as discriminatory, a federal judge ruled ( Ladson v. George Washington Univ. , 2016 BL 286722, D.D.C., No. 14-001586, 9/1/16 ).
For their federal and Washington, D.C., law race bias claims to survive to trial, fired employees must call into question an employer’s stated reasons for termination. The ruling Sept. 1 by Judge Amit P. Mehta of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia provides practitioners with an example of what type of employee evidence will be insufficient.
The judge agreed with Todd Ladson that courts should treat an employer’s subjective evaluations of an employee’s behavior “with caution.”
However, there was nothing subjective about the university’s reliance on the testimony of multiple female officers to discharge Ladson, he found, ruling in GW’s favor on Ladson’s race bias claims under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the D.C. Human Rights Act.
The university conducted an investigation during which current and former female officers alleged that Ladson asked them if they were sexually involved with other female officers, said he doesn’t “approve of homosexuals” and tried to convince them that they “should be with men.”
The officers further claimed Ladson’s repeated behavior made it difficult for lesbians to be accepted at work.
Ladson didn’t rebut the testimony as false, but seemingly argued that what “might be offensive and harassing to one person” might be “viewed as in perfectly good fun to someone else,” the judge said.
The university’s “consideration of Plaintiff’s well-documented boorish and crude behavior is not the kind of ‘subjective consideration’ that is cautioned against by the court,” Mehta said.
Additionally, Ladson failed to show GW’s investigation was unfair, or that white police supervisors who engaged in similar misbehavior received more lenient discipline, he said.
Arinderjit Dhali of Dhali in Washington represented Ladson. Raymond C. Baldwin and Christine M. Constantino of Seyfarth Shaw in Washington represented the university.
To contact the reporter on this story: Jay-Anne B. Casuga in Washington at email@example.com
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Susan J. McGolrick at firstname.lastname@example.org
The opinion is available at http://www.bloomberglaw.com/public/document/Ladson_v_George_Washington_Univ_No_14cv001586_APM_2016_BL_286722_.
Copyright © 2016 The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
All Bloomberg BNA treatises are available on standing order, which ensures you will always receive the most current edition of the book or supplement of the title you have ordered from Bloomberg BNA’s book division. As soon as a new supplement or edition is published (usually annually) for a title you’ve previously purchased and requested to be placed on standing order, we’ll ship it to you to review for 30 days without any obligation. During this period, you can either (a) honor the invoice and receive a 5% discount (in addition to any other discounts you may qualify for) off the then-current price of the update, plus shipping and handling or (b) return the book(s), in which case, your invoice will be cancelled upon receipt of the book(s). Call us for a prepaid UPS label for your return. It’s as simple and easy as that. Most importantly, standing orders mean you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you’re relying on. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.960.1220 or by sending an email to email@example.com.
Put me on standing order at a 5% discount off list price of all future updates, in addition to any other discounts I may quality for. (Returnable within 30 days.)
Notify me when updates are available (No standing order will be created).
This Bloomberg BNA report is available on standing order, which ensures you will all receive the latest edition. This report is updated annually and we will send you the latest edition once it has been published. By signing up for standing order you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you need. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.372.1033, option 5, or by sending us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Put me on standing order
Notify me when new releases are available (no standing order will be created)