Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

899 words | 3 page(s)

Dear Sir or Madam,

I am writing this letter as a complaint of discrimination by Ronna Gardner of Xator Corporation. Please also accept this letter as a formal complaint of wrong-doing in the workplace at Xator Corporation where I am currently employed as an HiTrax Technician/Screen since January of 2017. During my employment with Xator Corporation, I have been subject to racial discrimination and a hostile work environment. Ronna Gardner, another employee, has struggled with me since I started working in January of 2017. Ronna Gardner serves as a lead for Xator Corporation. During team meetings, Ms. Gardner singled me out and told me to stop what I was working on to look at her.

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Other members attending the meeting were also engaged in other work activities, but only I was singled out to look at her directly. I felt I should keep my distance from her. I would accomplish this by sitting further away from her, or by trying to work on different shifts. Ronna Gardner’s appears to have difficulty accepting me as a 6’5” black man working in a rewarding position. When working the same shift as Ronna Gardner, I would receive frequent write-ups, stating that I smelled or passed gas, or grabbed myself and made fighting motions at work. When the leads came to discuss this with me, I felt like I was a problem at work, when I was only completing the duties and tasks assigned to me. I feel I have to walk on eggshells when working near Ronna Gardner, increasing the stress that I already feel working on the job.

Other co-workers have expressed dissatisfaction with Ronna, commenting that she adds a lot of stress to the work environment and makes comments to employees that are inappropriate in a workplace setting. As an example, she called out a coworker named Charles Howard, and called him asinine, or incredibly stupid, foolish, and mindless. When she was approached by management to apologize to him, she did not want to do so and instead quit her lead position. Ronna also stated that she is not comfortable working with the Atlanta Crew. This crew is a predominantly African American team. Ronna consistently talked about what she could to remove the African American employees from the workplace at Xator Corporation, creating an environment of unnecessary worry resulting from discrimination. Ronna is often trying to manipulate me by saying our jobs would be eliminated, or at risk, when in fact they were not.

When I confronted Ronna about the rumors she was spreading and my belief that her motives were racially directed, she began writing me up for problems at work. I believe her actions were retaliatory. Ronna attempted to contact the Department of State (DOS) stating that I failed to complete my job on the Smiths Detection HiTraX Hi Scan baggage scanner. This is false. I believe Ronna Gardner is currently engaged in activities that are leading to defamation of my character. I have been working since 2014 on the machines that she commented on, and have never once had a bad review of a technical problem reported by a supervisor before my interaction with Ronna.

I have attempted to speak to upper management regarding my concerns. Unfortunately, because Ronna wrote me up, my concerns have not been taken seriously nor investigated thoroughly. I believe that Ronna is attempting to have me fired because I am an African American employee, rather than because I am inefficient in my job functions. I work diligently for this company and have never had a performance issue during the many years that I have worked here.

Ronna Gardner reported me to Xator Contract and DOS officials in an attempt to get me fired, not by poor job performance, but because she was uncomfortable with my race. I have concerns that if I act in any way, I will be retaliated against and potentially fired.

The EEOC states that employees cannot discriminate against individuals by race, culture, or ethnicity. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects against discrimination. The EEOC states race and color discrimination in work situations is expressly forbidden, including discrimination related to hiring, firing, job assignments, pay, or other terms and conditions of employment. The sole basis for Ronna’s actions at this time is the color of my skin and the color of other employee’s skin working in individual departments. Upper management at the company has failed to investigate the matter fully following a report of maltreatment. Further, the company is actively working with Ronna to ensure that a path is available for terminating me, and possibly other employees that Ronna does not like on the basis of their skin tone.

I feel that I have been unfairly harassed in my workplace. I also believe that the constant attention toward my work, rather than a focus on the teams work as a whole, has created a hostile work environment. I am afraid that if I speak out of turn, or engage in other ordinary work activities, I will be singled out and written up for my actions. I fear that my employer currently is involved in retaliation against me, in part because I reported that Ronna was engaging in discriminatory behaviors. The EEOC has a duty to protect employees from retaliation in the workplace, along with protecting employees from discrimination. I hope you will consider my appeal to you in earnest.

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