Cleaning & Maintenance Management Online

Janitorial workers claim institutionalized racial discrimination

March 9, 2012

OAKLAND — Amtrak is being sued by 11 current and former janitorial employees who claim the company practiced pervasive and institutionalized racial discrimination against them, according to the Oakland Tribune.

The plaintiffs, nine men and two women, allege that they were passed over for promotions, assigned additional work and singled out for disciplinary action because they are black, the story stated.

A complaint was filed Monday in the Alameda County Superior Court; the plaintiffs are seeking a trial by jury, punitive damages from Amtrak and a court order for the company to cease and desist its discriminatory behavior, the story noted.

According to the complaint filed by lead plaintiff Derrell Whitney, a 23-year employee for Amtrak, he was given additional job responsibilities his white counterparts were not and was not promoted “solely because of his race.”

When solicited for comment, Amtrak officials declined, claiming they “don’t comment on any pending litigation,” the story added.

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