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Tiffany & Company faces racial discrimination accusation

A former African-American male manager of a Tiffany's location in Texas has filed a lawsuit in federal court citing racial discrimination. The former employee of the company that has its flagship operation in New York claims that he was given a termination warning despite having received excellent performance reviews and increasing sales since he joined the company in 1993. It is alleged that a new vice president was overheard making some disparaging remarks along the lines of "a black man representing the Tiffany brand" after a visit to the Texas location.

Tiffany's corporate representative maintains that the former employee's claims are meritless. Counsel for the terminated employee claims that racial bias exists in the implication that African-Americans do not fit the luxury brand of Tiffany & Company.

Employees who believe they have faced racial discrimination in the workplace can look to several factors to determine if their claim may have merit. One factor that might support a claim could be whether or not the employee is consistently passed over for promotions based on race. If the work record is stellar, and others are consistently promoted, that should certainly set off a warning sign.

Unfortunately, the signs of racial discrimination in the workplace can be very subtle and hard to prove. When employees keep an open dialogue among themselves about pay, benefits and conditions in the workplace, patterns can become apparent. Federal laws exist to protect employees from being discriminated against when it comes to salary, benefits and treatment in the workplace. If workers are being refused employment offers from the company based on race, or some employees are not being compensated in the same manner as others who are doing similar jobs, that can present very compelling evidence of some discrimination.

Source: The Huffington Post, "Black Employee Accuses Tiffany & Company Of Racial Discrimination", Julee Wilson, June 01, 2014

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