Pa. company faces charges of wrongful termination and discrimination in civil complaint

By Jon Campisi | Oct 5, 2011

A Delaware County, Pa. woman who claims she was fired from her job of more than four years at a local company has filed a federal discrimination lawsuit against her former employer and the superior who she alleges did much of the discriminating.

Bensalem, Pa. attorney Ari Karpf, of the law firm Karpf & Karpf, P.C., filed the civil complaint Oct. 3 at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on behalf of Khadijah Foster of Collingdale, Pa.

The defendants named in the lawsuit are Newtown Square, Pa.-based Project Management Institute, and Debra Weaver, who is listed as a high-level company manager.

According to the complaint, Foster, who is black, was directly supervised by Weaver for the last year out of the four years she worked for the defendant.

While under Weaver’s supervision, Foster experienced repeated discrimination, the suit states, and was subjected to “pretextual discipline because of Plaintiff’s race, including, but not limited to, singling Plaintiff out for discipline that Caucasian employees did not receive.”

During the period between November 2010 and March of this year, Foster attempted to put a stop to the discrimination via lodging complaints to company officials, but “the mistreatment did not cease,” the lawsuit claims.

In mid March, however, timed with the most recent of her discrimination charges, Foster was given her first written discipline in nearly four years of working for the company, the suit states.

Following the discipline, Foster was told she would undergo a period of consistent monitoring, although she contends the disciplinary period continued after it was supposed to have ended, and was marked by constant harassment and singling-out for further disciplinary action, the suit claims.

In late September of this year, after Foster again complained of discriminatory mistreatment, she was terminated by her employer.

“Plaintiff was terminated from Defendants because of her race and because she engaged in a protected activity by making complaints for racial discrimination,” the lawsuit states.

The complaint accuses the defendants of racial discrimination, wrongful termination, hostile work environment and retaliation.

Foster seeks to have the defendants banned from continuing their alleged pattern of discrimination. She also seeks compensation for any lost and future earnings and other job benefits, any other legal and equitable relief, and relief for pain and suffering and emotional distress.

Foster is seeking a jury trial.

The federal case number is 2:11-cv-06189-TJS.

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