Yesterday, the local chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People filed a discrimination lawsuit in District Court against the city of Albuquerque. It accuses the city of treating African-American employees differently on the basis of race.
The lawsuit charges that the city does not promote African-American workers, pays them less and asks extra work of them without compensation. They are also subject to harassment and intimidation, according to the lawsuit.
The city demands that African-American employees “perform menial and demeaning tasks,” states the lawsuit, and requires them “to adhere to unwritten policies and procedures” that don’t apply to other city workers. “This conduct is continuing and is pervasive,” according to the suit.
In June, the NAACP filed a discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a national agency that ensures federal discrimination laws are enforced. In September, the commission told Albuquerque’s NAACP that it was within its rights to take the issue to court.
The African-American employees of the city will be represented as a class by the Law Office of Brad Hall. The suit says they’ve suffered “loss of income and benefits, damage to their reputation, severe emotional distress, [and] disruption of their career,” among other things.