Though anybody can be subjected to illegal discrimination at work, victims tend to be women and people of color. Workers who are both a racial or ethnic minority and female can experience discrimination based on both these traits. Getting fair consideration in hiring, promotions, raises and other career opportunities can be especially challenging.
Highly educated women of color are not spared this treatment. In a recent lawsuit, a professor at the University of Michigan Law School says the school routinely discriminated against her based on her being Black and a woman, as well as her status as a single mother. The professor also accuses the law school of retaliating against her for fighting to add more Black professors to the faculty and for “championing” Black and female students.
Among her allegations:
- The plaintiff is the only Black female who is a full-time tenured professor at the law school and had been from 2018 to mid-2022. There was a single Black male who was a tenured professor during that time.
- Her salary did not increase at the same rate as two white professors who started at the same salary as the plaintiff. One of those white professors, a man, received a chaired professorship five years before she did.
- The dean of the law school once referred to the plaintiff as a “dominatrix.”
- School officials denied the plaintiff’s request to conduct her classes over Zoom due to fears of exposing her daughter to COVID-19 on campus. Instead, she was forced to leave her daughter in her office for several hours. White and male professors were allowed to teach over Zoom when they expressed similar concerns.
- Retaliation against her for advocating for Black and female students and faculty includes being constructively stripped of her duties, not having administrative support, pretextual discipline and being “ostracized.”
The law school denies her allegations.
Fighting for your legal right as a worker in the Saginaw area can help you recover compensation for lost income and other damages.