An employee of Goodwill Industries has filed a lawsuit against the organization, claiming that the Caucasian janitorial workers are getting paid more than the janitorial workers of racial minorities. According to the Southeast Texas Record, the suit was filed on July 28 in the Jefferson County District court by Earnest Sennet, who was making just $6 an hour as a janitor at Goodwill.
In the lawsuit, Earnest Sennet alleges that he was supposed to be paid $11 an hour, as it reportedly says in his contract. However, the defendant in this case told the plaintiff that he would only be getting paid $6 per hour. The plaintiff is a minority male, but the lawsuit does not specify what his exact ethnicity is or when he started his employment at Goodwill.
The lawsuit accuses Goodwill of race discrimination and breach of contract, where the plaintiff is suing the agency for emotional distress and exemplary damages. Earnest Sennet has Texas employment lawyer Antoine Freeman representing him in the case.
According to FindLaw, racial discrimination is illegal in the workplace under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. Reducing an employee's compensation on the basis of race or color is indeed one form of discrimination. While it's not exactly clear of when the plaintiff had worked for Goodwill, it's currently illegal to pay an employee less than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour as of July 24, 2009. Anybody who believes that their rights have been violated in the workplace, whether due to discrimination or unfair wages, should not hesitate to contact a Houston employment lawyer to learn more information on filing a claim.