Employee Called N-Word and Allegedly Removed From Schedule for Training While White Coworkers Were Not.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Employee Files a Lawsuit against Reliant Briarcliff Holdings for Race Discrimination
Leslee accepted the position of Certified Nurse’s Aide (CNA) at Reliant Briarcliff Holdings in 2015. Her job responsibilities included helping patients move in and out of bed, filing, charting, scheduling, and other assigned duties. When she started, Leslee observed that she and one other coworker were the only African American employees. When Leslee needed help to assist a patient in or out of bed, her Caucasian coworkers often refused to help Leslee. When it took Leslee longer to assist these patients by herself, as this normally required two CNAs, her Caucasian coworkers berated her for taking too long to move the patients.
Meanwhile, Leslee also worked with patients who often used the derogatory term N-word to refer to her. For good reason, Leslee hated this word. Her supervisors still wanted her to work with these patients. When it became too much to handle, Leslee threatened to quit to avoid the hostile work environment. However, she decided to stay when a supervisor asked her to reconsider her resignation and keep working. Hopeful for change, Leslee continued at her job.
But, things worsened. One work day, Leslee coordinated a shower time for a particularly difficult patient by asking the patient when she wanted to shower. When the patient’s daughter arrived and learned of the scheduled shower, she allegedly screamed at Leslee, “You don’t know how to do your job, asking someone when she wants to shower.” The next day, Leslee received a write up for “making a resident upset.” When the patient’s daughter arrived and learned of the scheduled shower, she allegedly screamed at Leslee, “You don’t know how to do your job, asking someone when she wants to shower.” The next day, Leslee received a write up for “making a resident upset.”Leslee immediately recognized the double standard. She pointed out that her Caucasian coworkers never received a write up even for much worse actions. In fact, she remembered that one employee didn’t show up for 9 days without calling in and another overdosed on drugs in the bathroom. Neither allegedly received discipline.
When several Caucasian employees used SnapChat to superimpose a monkey head on an image of an African American patient showering, Reliant Briarcliff required all employees to complete a resident abuse training video. Caucasian employees were allowed to complete the training at their convenience, but Leslee was taken off the schedule until she finished the training. When Leslee did return to work, a coworker allegedly yelled at her for “not working.” Leslee couldn’t catch a break from the treatment of her coworkers, the patients, and her employer.
Leslee resigned due to the ongoing discrimination and harassment. Throughout her employment, Leslee believes that Reliant Briarcliff Holdings took no meaningful steps to protect her from the discrimination. KM&A fights for employees like Leslee who have experienced race discrimination and a hostile work environment.
Full text of this complaint, as filed with the District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, is available at docket no: 2:17-cv-01373-LPL
Kraemer, Manes & Associates LLC is an employment law firm with principal offices in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, serving all counties in Pennsylvania, focusing on employment law, business law, litigation, and civil issues. KM&A clients include employees, small businesses, parties in litigation, and people with a variety of legal issues.