In October of 2013, the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky decided a case that involved a female African American plaintiff who sued her former employer alleging race discrimination and sex discrimination. (See Keys v Humana, Inc., 2013 WL 5740109 (W.D. Ky. 2013)). The plaintiff was hired in March of 2005 as a Director that oversaw 12 employees and reported to the Vice President. Id.
The Louisville Race Discrimination and Sex Discrimination plaintiff pointed to 14 incidents that led her to believe said discrimination was occurring. At one incidence she was verbally attacked, another time a co-worker spoke bad about her, then a male employee in October 2005 took over some of her accounts, she was cut off during a meeting and not invited back, and so on. In February 2006, Plaintiff had her title changed and she had to report to a different person. Her new supervisor she claims immediately began to treat her in a discriminatory manner. Id. Then in August of 2006 she was put on a performance improvement plan. Id. Plaintiff noted that ten to twelve African American employees were placed on performance improvement plans. Id.
In October of 2006 the Louisville Race Discrimination and Sex Discrimination plaintiff finally filed a complaint with the Associate Relations Department alleging the race and gender discrimination. Id. After an investigation, it was concluded that the allegations were unfounded.
Plaintiff was given a notice of termination on June 20, 2008. Plaintiff then hired a Louisville Race Discrimination and Sex Discrimination lawyer and filed a charge of discrimination based on her race and sex with the EEOC. Id. The lawsuit was filed on October 15, 2009. Id. It was amended on December 21, 2009. Id. The defendant filed a motion to dismiss that was granted but then reversed by the Sixth Circuit on July 2, 2012. Id. The case went back to the judge who granted plaintiff’s request to file a second amended complaint by November 15, 2012. Id. Plaintiff filed her second amended complaint on November 21, 2012. Id.
Defendant by its Louisville Race Discrimination and Sex Discrimination lawyer filed a motion to dismiss and/or motion to strike. Id. As to the motion to strike, the court ruled that the Complaint should not be stricken. Id. As to the motion to dismiss, the court looked at the hostile work environment claim, the discriminatory hiring and compensation claims, and the claims based on hostile work environment and discriminatory hiring and compensation. Id. The court granted the dismissal of these claims. Id.
As to the hostile work environment the court looked to see if “the workplace is permeated with discriminatory intimidation, ridicule, and insult that is sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter the conditions of the victim’s employment and create an abusive working environment…” Id. The court held that the plaintiff did not plead enough to satisfy her burden of proof. She did not allege enough to show that her work environment was both objectively and subjectively hostile due to sexually or racially-charged harassment. (cites omitted). “Although “a plaintiff need not prove a tangible decline in her work productivity,” there must be some evidence “that the harassment made it more difficult to do the job.”” (cites omitted).
Next, the Kentucky court looked at the hiring and compensation claims. The court noted that there are two types of claims; a contract-formation claim and a post-formation claim. Id. The post-formation claim has a four year statue of limitations as set forth in 28 U.S.C. section 1658, but the formation claim has a one year statute as per case law that indicates that the forum state’s statue of limitations for personal injury actions is what the court will follow. Id. They are subject to K.R.S. Section 431.140(a). Thus, plaintiff had one year to file her contract formation claims to the extent that her discriminatory hiring and compensation claims are based on circumstances that existed at the time she was hired. Id. Thus, these counts were dismissed as well.
If you have been the subject of a Louisville Race Discrimination and Sex Discrimination case, please call and speak to a Louisville Race Discrimination and Sex Discrimination lawyer at the Law Offices of Andrew Alitowski, P.A. at 888-ASK-ANDREW (888-275-2637) or contact us. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
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