A 57-year old employee of Boeing is suing the company for neglecting his right to be protected from the racial harassment he'd been receiving from his White co-workers. In response, Boeing claims his allegations have "no validity."
A Black employee of Boeing has had enough of the racial degradation he’s been subjected to in the company and has taken steps to sue.
Curtis Anthony is shedding light on the ill-treatment he’d been receiving from hostile peers while working in Boeing. The 57-year-old who’s been with the company since 2011 in its North Charleston, South Carolina plant said he’d been working in a “racially hostile” environment and this problem was never properly addressed by his superiors.
According to Anthony who filed a lawsuit against Boeing on June 7, the harassment began in 2017 when his White co-workers would urinate on his seat and desk.
"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 stated in his lawsuit. "I had to wait till they cleaned the area, brought me a new chair, a new desk."
He wondered who could do that to him and why. Moreover, he would often hear his peers use the n-word around him.
With the problem hanging on his head, Anthony said it became more difficult for him to focus on his job. He wondered who could do that to him and why. Moreover, he would often hear his peers use the n-word around him.
“It kind of hurt my thought pattern, my lifestyle,” Curtis said during his interview with 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.”
According to Anthony, he brought up his problem to management but instead of addressing the issue he was subjected to more degradation by moving him to a building without air conditioning.
"The significance and historical symbolism of hanging a noose over an African American's head is telling them you're going to lynch them.”
With the amount of stress he was under, he was forced to take medical leaves to receive counseling and it cost him his sobriety too. When he returned from his leave, he would be passed over for promotions in favor of less qualified employees.
A Boeing spokesperson in a statement denied that management ever learned of Anthony’s allegations which explains why there was never any action taken.
Finally, in March, Anthony found a noose on his desk which, according to his lawyer, Donald Gist, was “a direct threat of violence” when he spoke to ABC News.
"The significance and historical symbolism of hanging a noose over an African American's head is telling them you're going to lynch them,” he explained.
Meanwhile, a Boeing spokesperson in a statement denied that management ever learned of Anthony’s allegations which explains why there was never any action taken.
The statement also said that the only issue that came to management’s attention was the noose and the company handled it by conducting an investigation and firing the employee responsible.
It further adds that all of Anthony’s leave applications were always approved despite its frequency. That being said, the company stands by its belief that the man’s allegations have “no validity.”
In another lawsuit in 2018, a Black employee of the company was awarded $350,000 as part of his victory after suing for racial harassment.
Anthony's claims remind us of a class-action lawsuit filed against Boeing in 2016. Eight men and women sued the company in El Segundo, California for being subjected to a hostile work environment. They claimed the company favored White workers and would limit Black employees by keeping them in low-level positions and barring them from promotions.
In another lawsuit in 2018, a Black employee of the company was awarded $350,000 as part of his victory after suing for racial harassment. The man, Roderick Marshall claimed his white co-worker tossed a noose to him while he was sitting on his desk. He sued Boeing for condoning a racially hostile environment and won. At the time, there were five other cases lined up for the company to face, all involving racial harassment.