Joseph & Norinsberg LLC announced today that it has filed a civil action case in New York Supreme Court resulting from allegations that their client was subject to the ‘n-word’ by colleagues, including the assistant manager, while at work.
Dos Toros, a popular New York-based and headquartered Mexican-style food chain, and its holding company, Founders Table Restaurant Group, are named in the lawsuit.
The filing claims that Allison Edwards, a resident of Manhattan, lodged a formal complaint with the defendant detailing the regular use of the ‘n-word’ and other racial epithets by non-Black employees, including supervisors, without any consequence. On multiple occasions, Ms. Edwards was called the ‘n-word’ and exposed to frequent racist jokes. Managerial staff persons are said to have used the ‘n-word’ often when talking to subordinates.
Although Ms. Edwards filed complaints and reported the behavior to all appropriate parties, Dos Toros management met the plaintiff with dismissive responses and did not attempt to stop the verbal abuse. In fact, supervisors actually defended one of the employees who called Ms. Edwards the “n-word,” claiming this racial epithet was merely “slang.” She was forced to resign due to the discomfort and trauma caused by employees using the slur daily.
“The historically horrendous nature of using the ‘n-word’ will never go away. No one should be subject to hostile, offensive language while on the job,” said Bennitta Joseph, Partner Joseph & Norinsberg LLC. “Too often, employees withstand offensive workplace behavior, especially when seemingly endorsed by senior leaders whose authority shapes the behavior of the rest of the staff. After our client communicated her dismay, management should have rectified the situation. We are committed to and await justice owed to our client.”
Regardless of the race of those using the callous epithet, discrimination, hate speech, and retaliation in the workplace present a possible violation of several federal and state laws protecting civil and human rights. The employee is seeking compensatory and punitive damages for loss wages, emotional distress, and harm to her professional and personal reputation.