Category Archives: Race Discrimination

Fifth Circuit Reverses a Jury Verdict in a Racial Harassment Case Because the Employer Took Prompt Remedial Action

When one employee harasses another employee on the basis of sex, race, or another protected classification, the employer is not automatically liable for the misconduct of the employee. Instead, vicarious liability attaches only if the employer knows (or should have known) about the harassment and fails to take prompt remedial action. The Fifth Circuit applied… Read More »

The Supreme Court Holds That Title VII Imposes Strict Liability on an Employer for Harassment by a Supervisor Only if the Supervisor Has the Power to Take “Tangible Employment Actions”

By a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court narrowed the circumstances under which an employer can be held strictly liable for the actions of a supervisor in an harassment case.  The case is Vance v. Ball State University (June 24, 2013). In a typical harassment case, one of the key issues is whether the employer is… Read More »

McAllen Federal Court Finds Direct Evidence of Race and Sex Discrimination Against a White Applicant

Judge Michaela Alvarez of the Southern District of Texas decided a motion for summary judgment case involving allege race discrimination and sex discrimination in Fischer v. City of Donna, No. 7:12-CV-242 (May 14, 2013). The plaintiff, who is a white female, applied for the position as city manager of Donna, Texas.  She was not hired.  Instead,… Read More »

Corpus Christi Court of Appeals: Charge of Discrimination Was Sufficient to Cover “Pattern and Practice” Claim

The Corpus Christi Court of Appeals considered the sufficiency of a charge of discrimination in a race discrimination case in Rincones v. WHM Custom Services, Inc., No. 13-11-00075-CV (Tex. App. — Corpus Christi May 2, 2013) (memorandum opinion). The plaintiff was an employee of WHM working at Exxon’s facility in Baytown.  The plaintiff took a… Read More »

San Antonio Court of Appeals Rejects Race Discrimination Claim Because the Plaintiff Failed to Show That Other Employees Were Similarly Situated

The San Antonio Court of Appeals considered a race discrimination claim in Grice v. Alamo Community College District, No. 04-12-00524-CV (Tex. App. — San Antonio April 24, 2013) (memorandum opinion). The plaintiff was a black man who worked for ACCD in an administrative position.  He had a sexual relationship with a temporary employee who was initially… Read More »

Fifth Circuit: Indian Respiratory Therapists Failed to Establish Pretext

In Assariathu v. Lone Star Health Management Associates, L.P., No. 12-10730 (5th Cir. March 6, 2013) (unpublished), eight respiratory therapists of Indian ancestry sued the Dallas Regional Medical Center for race and national origin discrimination.  As part of a department restructuring, all respiratory therapists were required to re-interview for their jobs.  The head of the… Read More »

Fifth Circuit Finds That a “Fried Chicken” Joke Was Racist

The Fifth Circuit’s decision in Autry v. Fort Bend Independent School District, No. 11-20639 (5th Cir. Jan. 7, 2013), raised eyebrows for reasons that had nothing to do with its ultimate outcome.  The plaintiff (who is black) claimed that he was denied a promotion due to racial discrimination.  The School District acknowledged that it hired a… Read More »