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Houston Employment Law Blog


Sexual harassment a problem in the science field

Although many people in Texas would like to think that sexual harassment will eventually be a thing of the past, new research shows that it remains a real problem. This appears to be particularly true in the science field, where woman are sexually harassed or assaulted while doing research. Most of these sexual harassment acts take place at the hands of the female employees’ supervisors, according to the research.

Researchers focused on more than 100 men and over 500 women who have experience in scientific disciplines such as geology, archaeology and anthropology. More than 60 percent of the survey respondents said they experienced harassment. Meanwhile, 20 percent claimed to be sexual assault victims.

Electrician claims he faced age discrimination on the job

Being treated poorly by a boss because of one's age can be dispiriting for an employee in Texas and other parts of the United States. A 43-year-old man in a different state recently said he was a victim of age discrimination in the workplace, and was then fired for complaining about how his employer mistreated him. He is now seeking damages under an age discrimination act as well as under an anti-retaliation provision of the act.

The issue started when the man, an electrician, said he was terminated in 2012 after correspondence from a supervisor at a previous job supposedly indicated he had performed unsatisfactorily. The man said that his personal discussion with the supervisor of the job, however, indicated that the supervisor was actually pleased with his work. The male employee then filed a discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, or EEOC, claiming that the correspondence was fraudulent. The man ended up being rehired, but a condition of his being rehired was that he would drop the complaint; he agreed to do so.

Goldman Sachs, Tinder face workplace discrimination suits

If an employee in Texas experiences discrimination in the workplace on the basis of his or her sex, he or she naturally may want to hold the employer accountable for its actions. Employees at two companies in another state recently filed lawsuits against the employers after alleging that they were victims of sex discrimination and sexual harassment. One workplace discrimination suit was filed against Tinder, a tech startup, while another was filed against Goldman Sachs.

A former female executive at Tinder has sued the company, saying that she was called “whore” multiple times. She was also stripped of her title since the company felt that her sex and youth devalued the company, according to the suit. The woman said she was particularly attacked by the company’s marketing officer.

Workplace discrimination suit filed against Texas company

Being treated differently from one’s colleagues because of race can feel like a slap in the face of an employee who feels that he or she has made positive contributions to the company. Federal law forbids companies from discriminating against people on the basis of protected factors such as race, sex and age -- all of which are factors that people can’t personally control. One woman in Texas recently filed a workplace discrimination suit against a company she claimed mistreated her on the basis of race.

The woman said the company, called HSMTX/Liberty LLC, terminated her employment because she was black. She served in the role of respiratory therapist for the facility starting in June 2013, according to her suit. However, the nursing director accused her of shouting at a white employee, she said.

Pregnant woman files workplace discrimination suit

Announcing that one is pregnant in a Texas workplace typically incites excitement and congratulations from fellow co-workers. However, if a boss doesn't like the idea of a worker being pregnant, the individual just might end up being discriminated against. One woman in another state recently filed a workplace discrimination suit against her former employer for allegedly mistreating her after she announced her pregnancy.

The woman decided to sue the company for $470,000. She said she worked for the establishment for over two years before telling managers that she was expecting a child. The woman then said the company owner recommended that she quit working for one year, which would give her time to take care of her baby.

Woman files claim of wrongful termination in federal court

If a person is mistreated because of his or her religious beliefs and inappropriately fired, this is a legitimate reason for a lawsuit in Texas. One person in another state recently filed a wrongful termination and religious discrimination suit against a city and its police chief following a series of events. The incident began when the woman, who had worked in her position for more than two decades, was fired because she allegedly harassed a volunteer who was lesbian.

The woman said the department tried to suppress her religious beliefs, which included punishing her for donning a festive Christmas hat at work during the holidays. In addition and without her permission, the department went through her locker in search of a prayer that she stored there, according to the claim. Although she formally complained about the matters in 2012 and 2013, she says that these complaints were not acknowledged. In fact, the woman said she was encouraged to somehow change her own behavior.

Man claims Texas company committed age discrimination

After working for a company for a long time, a person understandably may feel valuable. After all, he or she has acquired years of wisdom and knowledge that can prove helpful for the company. Some employers, however, view old age as a liability instead of an asset, preferring younger workers who may cost less and contribute new ideas. These companies in Texas might end up engaging in age discrimination, which is illegal.

One man in Texas recently sued his employer -- Hagemeyer North America -- alleging that the company discriminated against him based on his age. The man reportedly worked as a salesman there for over 50 years. However, he claims that he recently began to experience remarks about his age from his supervisors. He was eventually fired in early April, allegedly due to his poor performance, he said.

Woman claims sexual harassment, wrongful firing at Starbucks

One former worker at a Starbucks has filed a complaint against the popular coffeehouse, claiming wrongful termination and sexual harassment by employees. It is not legal for a company to allow an environment where sexual harassment can take place, nor is it lawful for employers -- in Texas of elsewhere -- to fire workers for discriminatory or retaliatory reasons. If this takes place, the wronged worker has the right to take the matter to court.

The 27-year-old woman said she was a barista in another state and complained about how her fellow employees harassed her, particularly the male ones. She made this complaint in the form of an email to the company’s district manager. The woman claimed that the workers asked her to have sex with them, showed her photos and videos that were pornographic and fondled her.

Woman in Texas claims workplace discrimination, wrongful firing

No one likes to be fired from a job, but learning that one has been wrongfully fired can often cause sadness and anger. It is within the rights of an individual who has experienced an illegal firing and/or workplace discrimination to fight for justice through the legal system in Texas. One woman recently claimed that she was subjected to discrimination at the job site and terminated wrongfully.

This event took place in Smith County. The woman filed a suit against a cardiovascular consultant company. She asserts that she was wrongfully fired and discriminated against due to her gender. She also alleges that the company engaged in fraud, workplace retaliation and defamation.

Laid-off school employees file race discrimination suit

Although workplace discrimination is illegal, it is unfortunately still a problem in Texas and other parts of the country. In one nearby state, a group of workers have sued a school district on the basis of race discrimination. The five employees specifically claimed that the district was purging employees based on race.

The employees worked in various departments in the school district, including in the superintendent’s office, food services, human resources and facilities. They said the school district historically has laid off black workers and replaced them with consultants who were of another race, perhaps to better reflect the student body's racial ratio. These workers said the school district not only discriminated based on race but also on age. The plaintiffs range in age from 40 to 56 years old.

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