Mark Iandolo Aug. 31, 2016, 2:29pm

BUFFALO, N.Y. (Legal Newsline) — The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has announced a lawsuit against Frontier Hot-Dip Galvanizing Inc., a Buffalo provider of metal coating, for allegations of race-based harassment.


EEOC alleges the company, since at least 2011, has subjected its black employees, including Johnny Mitchell, Jean Basquin and others, to a race-based hostile work environment. Black employees allegedly were subjected to racial slurs and obscene racial graffiti in common areas. Frontier’s superintendent also harassed Basquin for his Haitian origin, EEOC says.


"This lawsuit sends a clear message that Title VII's prohibition against racial harassment in the workplace will be vigorously enforced by EEOC," said Jeffrey Burstein, regional attorney for EEOC's New York District office. "No one should have to face this kind of horrific harassment."


The EEOC seeks back pay, compensatory and punitive damages, as well as injunctive relief, for Frontier’s alleged violations of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.


"Employees who file charges of discrimination are heroes who allow EEOC to investigate and eradicate discrimination from their workplaces," said EEOC's New York acting district director, Judy Keenan. "Title VII also prohibits employer retaliation, and EEOC will continue to vigorously enforce that prohibition."

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