Chipotle Mexican Grill, one of the most popular fast food restaurants in the world, is being sued for racial discrimination. But should you sue the fast-casual restaurant giant, too?
Chipotle is under fire for alleged instances of racial discrimination against its black employees and for allegedly giving preferential treatment to its Latino workers.
Sheqweshu Clark, a former black Chipotle manager, filed a racial discrimination lawsuit against Chipotle after the fast food giant terminated her in January 2016.
Clark alleges that she was fired for complaining that her Latino co-workers were receiving more favorable day shifts while giving black workers night duty shifts.
Is Chipotle guilty of racial discrimination?
If Clark’s allegations are true, it wouldn’t be such a surprise considering that racial discrimination accounts for over 35% of all the workplace discrimination charges filed in our country (over 30,000 racial discrimination claims every year).
But the Chipotle case may be more complicated than it seems, our racial discrimination attorneys at Rager & Yoon – Employment Lawyers explain. Chipotle responded to Clark’s lawsuit with allegations that she had allowed a subordinate to work while intoxicated, which allegedly became the reason for her termination.
During her ongoing suit in Los Angeles Superior Court, Clark also alleged that a Chipotle supervisor told her after she spoke out about racial discrimination in the workplace that “black girls always have an attitude.”
The male manager, who is Latino, allegedly ignored Clark’s complaints, and the alleged preferential treatment given to Latino workers continued in the workplace.
Clark also allegedly filed a complaint with Chipotle’s human resources department, but never received a response, which indicates just how impotent HR departments are when it comes to dealing with harassment and discrimination complaints.
In January 2016, the woman spoke to the district manager about her case, but she downplayed the allegations and said there was no problem. However, she did promise to set up a fair shift schedule for Chipotle employees.
How to file a race discrimination charge?
Clark is suing Chipotle for racial discrimination, wrongful termination, retaliation, workplace harassment as well as failure to prevent harassment. The suit involves another black former Chipotle employee who said that she also believes the fast-food chain’s higher-ups assigned night shifts on the basis of race.
Clark had been working at Chipotle for nearly four years, from June 2012 to January 2016, when she was terminated for allegedly allowing another employee to work an entire shift while drunk, putting both fellow employees and customers in potential danger.
Rager & Yoon – Employment Lawyers is closely monitoring the developments in the alleged racial discrimination case filed against Chipotle.
As it was proven in the Chipotle case, the HR department may not be the best place to file a racial discrimination complaint, as what the department essential does is trying to protect the company’s reputation.
That’s why it’s highly advised to be legally represented by an experienced racial discrimination attorney and consider filing a race discrimination charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
However, you need to comply with the EEOC’s strict procedures when filing a racial discrimination charge, which is why it’s not recommended to provide any details about the discriminatory act on your own.
Consult our Los Angeles racial discrimination attorney at Rager & Yoon – Employment Lawyers to find out your best strategy when it comes to filing a race discrimination charge with the EEOC. Call our offices at 310-527-6994 or fill out this contact form to get a free initial consultation.