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August 2012 Archives

Waste Management Sued for Racial Discrimination in Houston

Waste management is the type of industry that you would think has trouble keeping people from quitting. Of course, there are plenty of things that need to happen in the removal and disposal of garbage besides picking it up, which isn't even so bad with the new automated trucks.

So it's not too surprising that someone would sue to keep their job at Waste Management Inc. ("WM"). Which is exactly what Angelia Osborne of Houston did when she felt she was racially discriminated against and wrongfully terminated, according to The Southeast Texas Record.

Osborne was the only African American at her office and claims she was denied access to a training seminar because of her race. Osborne also claims she was constantly maligned by supervisors even though she completed all of her assigned duties and responsibilities, according to the Record.

Will her suit be successful?

Lawsuit Claims Luby's Failed to Stop Sexual Harassment

Luby's Cafeteria is a great place to grab a bite after church on Sunday. It's just a nice wholesome restaurant where you can get some grub with the family. So why is Houston-based Luby's at the center of a sexual harassment lawsuit?

Jennifer Nelson claims a Luby's general manager created a hostile work environment and Luby's itself failed to prevent the sexual harassment, according to The Southeast Texas Record. Nelson claims the manager offered to buy her a car because she drove him crazy and told her he wanted to be the next guy she had intercourse with.

Nelson also claims that when she rejected the manager's advances, he retaliated by allegedly telling another associate manager that he planned to reduce her hours until she quit or was fired. Let's see if she has a good claim.

MHMR Sued for Wrongful Termination Based on Age, Sex

In this economy, nobody wants to be fired or laid off, especially if the action is unlawful. But in such cases, a fired or laid-off employee may have legal recourse to get her job back, or at least some lost wages.

An ex-employee with Mental Health and Mental Retardation of Harris County has sued the agency for wrongful termination, according to The Southeast Texas Record. Yvette Hand's lawsuit claims she was fired because of her age and sex. She had been working at MHMR as a licensed professional healing arts therapist.

Hand alleges there was a plan to harass her until she resigned, and claims she was fired for false reasons when the plan did not work, according to the Record.

Was this termination wrongful?

Kingwood Hospital Worker Fired After FMLA Leave for Cancer

Cancer is a terrible thing to be diagnosed with. You can beat it once, twice, three times, but as many times as you beat it there is still the risk that it will come back.

Unfortunately for Tracie Mills, an employee of KPH Consolidation Inc., which operates as Kingwood Medical Center, her cancer recurred. While neither the cancer nor the treatment disabled Mills enough to stop working, she filed for periodic leave for weekly visits to the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, according to The Southeast Texas Record. Once this leave was approved, Mills claims she was fired for using it.

The hospital, however, states that she was fired for rudely answering a call over the call light system, according to the Record. Mills claims this is merely a cover for her retaliatory firing. What are her rights — and yours — under the Family and Medical Leave Act?

Tuesday Morning CEO Claims She Was Fired for Having Breast Cancer

When you think of discrimination lawsuits, you usually think of entry-level to mid-level management employees as the ones that could possibly be discriminated against. However, that’s not always the case.

In Dallas, the discount retail chain Tuesday Morning has allegedly fired its CEO because she was diagnosed with breast cancer, according to Courthouse News Service.

Ex-CEO Kathleen Mason filed a discrimination suit with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) on the basis of her disability, according to the Dallas Business Journal. The suit claims that Mason was given a $500,000 bonus and an amended employment contract a few months before the company fired her.

Gold's Gym Might be Strong, but Not on Overtime?

When you're heading to the gym, it often feels like you are working overtime. You just put in your eight hours in the office, sitting in front of a computer and now you have to go spend another hour or so doing hard labor. At least it's supposed to be hard labor.

While we worry about having to get our hour of workout, Gold's Gym trainers have to worry about getting their overtime pay. In March, Gold's Gym purchased Spectrum Clubs in San Antonio and is allegedly continuing a policy of not paying overtime to its "Membership Consultants" or trainers to you and me, according to Courthouse News Service. The trainers claim that they were improperly classified as exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act's overtime provision.

What exactly is an exempt employee?

Blowin' the Whistle? You Have Rights Against Retaliation

While the image of blowing the whistle may conjure images of a NFL referee or get Too Short’s “Blow the Whistle” stuck in your head, it is a serious matter when it comes to employment law. Who better knows about the wrongdoing within a company than an employee?

A former deputy constable in Dallas County claims that he was fired for being a whistleblower. After the deputy, Lester Smith, made good faith reports to the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, he was fired by Precinct 1 Constable Derick Evans, according to Courthouse News Service.