$25 Million Verdict in Racial Harassment Case

June 14th, 2012 by JBWK

In a startling case in New York, ArcelorMittal Steel wound up with a $25 million judgment against it based on harassment of an African-American employee in the company’s Pennsylvania plant.

With most of the judgment coming from punitive damages, the case involved only one plaintiff, who was subjected to ongoing racial harassment over the course of three years, including finding a stuffed monkey with a noose around its neck in his car. Other incidents involved racial slurs and graffiti.

The jury found the employer didn’t take reasonable steps to stop the harassment, and imposed most of the liability on the company, giving a stark reminder of the risks posed by not taking harassment or discrimination claims seriously enough.

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