A Black employee of Boeing is suing the aerospace company alleging he’s been subjected to a racially hostile environment.
Curtis Anthony says he still works for the company and claims he’s continued to be the target of racist incidents despite reporting it to management, WCSC reported.
Because of that, Anthony has filed a lawsuit against the company, where he’s worked for the past eight years. He said the harassment began two years ago with co-workers using the n-word.
“I was very surprised to hear that people that doesn’t look like me was saying things and they were younger,” he explained. “I expect it from older people, but younger people? And there was nothing done about it? It just reiterates that this is a problem and it’s been an ongoing problem and it’s always gonna be a problem until something is done about it.”
Allegedly, co-workers hung a noose over Anthony’s desk after he had been working in New Orleans in January and February of this year. In a 2017 incident, white employees “urinate[d] in [his] seat and on his work desk,” ABC News reported.
“It was demeaning, I really didn’t want to work, so they had to move my desk, they had to move my chair, I really couldn’t perform the duties I am paid to do,” Anthony said. “I had to wait till they cleaned the area, brought me a new chair, a new desk.”
The quality inspector at Boeing’s North Charleston, South Carolina, plant filed docs June 7 to sue over being subjected to a “racially hostile” environment as well as allegedly being retaliated against after he reported the harassment he claims to have been facing.
“It kind of hurt my thought pattern, my lifestyle,” Anthony said to WCSC. “I used to go home angry, upset, and argue a lot. My wife was always asking ‘why’ and I wouldn’t tell her at first.”
I’m not really sure who I’m walking up to. I approach people and it affects my whole overall being there,” Anthony told ABC News adding that even when he’s at home “it affects me in a negative way.”
Regarding his claim of retaliation, Anthony said that after complaining to management about his treatment, he was sent to work in a building that lacked air conditioning.
The experience took such a toll that Anthony had to take a medical leave and obtain therapy for his stress using the Family and Medical Leave Act, the filing states according to ABC. Additionally, Anthony asserts he slipped in his sobriety and enrolled in the Boeing’s Employee Assistance Program. Once Anthony returned from his leave, he allegedly faced another dose of retaliation. This time, it purportedly came in the form of being passed up for promotions, which were said to be given to “lesser qualified Caucasian workers.”
In a statement from Boeing issued to various media outlets, the company asserts Anthony’s claims are inaccurate.
“While Mr. Anthony is a valued Boeing South Carolina teammate, there is no validity to his allegations,” they said of the lawsuit, which also alleges intentional infliction of emotional distress, violations FMLA, breach of contract and breach of contract with fraudulent intent. “In fact, Mr. Anthony’s requests for FMLA leave have been consistently and repeatedly approved by the company in an expeditious manner.”
“Moreover, most of Mr. Anthony’s allegations were never brought to the attention of management, giving the company no opportunity to investigate these claims. The single issue he did raise was dealt with promptly and in a fair manner,” the statement concluded.
Additionally, Boeing said it fired the person responsible for the noose hanging incident.
Anthony’s suit comes more than three years after the company was faced with a class-action racial discrimination suit in El Segundo, California.