9/9/13

Target Discrimination Case in California


In just another example of how Tarbutt continues to put its corporate foot in its mouth.
The below articles are representative of press reports on this discrimination issue. The 1st article has a link to the video of a news report about these workers and it refers to the 'unbelievably ridiculous memo' and of course this California suit will be in the media for many months and probably for years. 

The 3 Plaintiff's allege 5 causes of action:

1) Harassment based on race in violation of FEHA,

2) Discrimination based on race in violation of FEHA,

3) Retaliation in violation of FEHA,

4) Failure to prevent in violation of FEHA,

5) Discrimination based on age in violation of FEHA

Direct link to 27 page complaint is:  http://media.sacbee.com/smedia/2013/07/10/13/10/mdD9f.So.4.pdf
 
 
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Target Admits Reminding Managers That Not All Hispanics 'Wear Sombreros'
Direct link to this article at:  http://tinyurl.com/lcr7wnm
Posted: 07/10/2013 12:53 am EDT
Target used a training document at one of its warehouses reminding managers that not all Hispanic employees eat tacos and burritos, dance to salsa or wear sombreros, the company said Tuesday.
 
A lawsuit filed by three former warehouse workers in California's Yolo County shed light on the document, titled "Organization Effectiveness, Employee and Labor Relations Multi-Cultural Tips," which included suggestions on managing Hispanic workers, and addressing stereotypes about how they eat and dress.

 
Molly Snyder, a spokeswoman for Target, confirmed to The Huffington Post that the document was used during conversations at a company distribution center. She said it was not part of any "formal or company-wide training."
Snyder added that the retailer holds itself responsible for the contents of the document and that Target is "truly sorry."
 
"It is never Target’s intent to offend our team members or guests and we apologize," she said.
According to the lawsuit, the document stated the following:
a. Food: not everyone eats tacos and burritos;
b. Music: not everyone dances to salsa;
c. Dress: not everyone wears a sombrero;
d. Mexicans (lower education level, some may be undocumented);
e. Cubans (Political refugees, legal status, higher education level); and
f. They may say 'OK, OK' and pretend to understand, when they do not, just to save face.
"The content of the document referenced is not representative of who Target is," said Snyder. "We strive at all times to be a place where our team and guests feel welcome, valued and respected."


The three former employees, Robert Gonzalez, Bulmaro Fabian and Pedro Garcia-Ayala, also claim in the lawsuit that their Caucasian bosses regularly used racial slurs when addressing Hispanic employees, and when Gonzalez reported the problem to the human resources department, his supervisors retaliated.

 Later, Gonzalez, Fabian and Garcia-Ayala were fired. All three claim that their terminations were racially motivated.
Do you work at Target? Have you witnessed discrimination? Send an email to kim.bhasin@huffingtonpost.com.
 
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Workers Outraged at Target's 'Cultural Tips'
Courthouse News Service, By ELIZABETH WARMERDAM

Monday, July 08, 2013Last Update: 9:28 AM PT

WOODLAND, Calif. (CN) - Target's offensive "multi-cultural tips" for managers inform bosses that not all Hispanic employees eat tacos, dance to salsa or wear sombreros, former employees say in Superior Court.

Robert Gonzalez, Bulmaro Fabian and Pedro Garcia-Ayala sued Target Corp. in Yolo County Court.

They claim they suffered crude harassment, discrimination and retaliation at work, and that Target's tips for managers are offensive in themselves.

"Target provided its distribution warehouse managers a document titled, 'Organization Effectiveness, Employee and Labor Relations Multi-Cultural Tips,'" the complaint states. "This document instructs managers to note differences among Hispanic employees, and states the following:

"a. Food: not everyone eats tacos and burritos;

"b. Music: not everyone dances to salsa;

"c. Dress: not everyone wears a sombrero;

"d. Mexicans (lower education level, some may be undocumented);

"e. Cubans (Political refugees, legal status, higher education level); and

"f. They may say 'OK, OK' and pretend to understand, when they do not, just to save face."

The plaintiffs claim that nearly all the management positions were held by Caucasians, who regularly used racial slurs while addressing Hispanic employees, such as "Only a 'wetback' can work this hard," "You got to be Mexican to work like this," and "What the hell, I'm already sweating like a Mexican," the employees say in the complaint.

Gonzalez claims that he complained to human resources, and his supervisors retaliated for it.

He claims his manager, Terry McCafee, "began using more racial epithets when instructing Gonzalez on his work and would purposefully throw boxes on the ground and then order Gonzalez to pick them up in an attempt to humiliate Gonzalez amongst his colleagues."

McCafee is not a defendant. The only defendant is the corporation and Does 1-100.

All three employees say they were fired with racial animus; Gonzalez and Faiban, both 58, state that their age was also a factor.

They seek punitive damages for harassment, failure to prevent harassment, age and race discrimination and retaliation.

They are represented by Simerdip Khangura with the Law Offices of Ilija Cvetich in Sacramento.

Law Offices of Ilija Cvetich
3465 B American River Drive
Sacramento, CA 95864   web site at:  http://cvetichlaw.com/ 

Link to articlehttp://tinyurl.com/m4sqpep
See other articles at:  http://tinyurl.com/m4zwemw and http://tinyurl.com/lfnul9p


Here is a Target attempt at damage control.

Subject: Your Inquiry to Target®
Date: 7/12/2013 3:56:20 P.M.   EDT
From:
guest.relations@target.com

Dear Target Guest,

It’s never Target's intent to offend our team members or guests and we apologize. The content of the document referenced is not representative of who Target is. We strive at all times to be a place where our team and guests feel welcome, valued and respected. This document, which was used during conversations at one distribution center, was never part of any formal or company-wide training.

Target is firmly committed to diversity and inclusivity in our workplace. We never tolerate or condone discrimination in any form, and have extensive policies and procedures in place to prevent discrimination.

Sincerely,
Neelu
Target Guest Relations
www.target.com
(800) 440-0680
[THREAD ID:3-EQ09JW]

 
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The June 24, 27 page filing, is available at:  http://media.sacbee.com/smedia/2013/07/10/13/10/mdD9f.So.4.pdf
  14 pages are the original complaint and the remainder are 2 exhibits, the 2nd one contains the offensive document.

 

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