A Portland jury deliberated for less than four hours before it awarded a former worker at Daimler’s Western Star facility on Swan Island $750,000 in damages.
In this article, we introduce the case in which Cambreleng Law played a vital role in securing justice for Victor Pierce, who had been subjected to a racially hostile work environment. According to evidence presented at trial, 59-year-old Victor Pierce, who is black, was working on the assembly line one day in 2009 when he saw a hangman’s noose suspended from a truck cab; management never found the person(s) responsible. Then, in 2013, two of his white co-workers accosted and threatened a black colleague, stating they were going to drag him around the parking lot by a noose attached to the back of their pickup truck; the offending parties were not fired. Furthermore, in 2014, a white employee was suspended for three days when he told Mr. Pierce “I wish I had a noose.” While all this was going on, the company failed to completely remove racist graffiti in the men’s bathroom that included racial slurs and a swastika. Ultimately, Mr. Pierce retired early, because he said he could no longer endure the hostile environment at the plant.
Mr. Pierce stated, “We need to change, there's a lot of things that need to change in our society.”
Mr. Pierce, however, is among at least twelve (12) employees who have filed lawsuits or settled with the company over racial harassment complaints in recent years. Even after repeated complaints by Mr. Pierce, Daimler "failed to take appropriate disciplinary action against the coworker prior to his retirement," alleged Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian.
Racial discrimination has been an issue in this country for decades and when it happens in the workplace, the unfair treatment, retaliation, and hurtful conduct can be more than frustrating. Taking a stand against employee discrimination is an important piece of Cambreleng Law’s work. Just like Victor Pierce, it's time to raise our voices against hostile work environments. The verdict and end result of Mr. Pierce’s fight is proof that the truth will prevail.
Harassment and hostile environment claims usually involve complex factual and legal issues. Rebecca Cambreleng is an experienced employment law attorney in Portland, and pledges to work with victims of social injustice and help them seek to right the wrongs of those unfair practices.
Cambreleng Law is always available to guide you if you're in a similar situation to Mr. Pierce. If you have been the victim of discrimination based on your race, religion, sexual orientation, gender, or disability, contact Cambreleng Law today.