Verdict, Recognizing a New U.S. Supreme Court Decision, Puts Abusive Employers on Notice and Provides Hope for Victimized Workers
ROCKVILLE, Md., Sept. 28, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A Montgomery County jury has awarded Donna Jackson $650,000 in compensatory and economic damages after her former employer of 31 years, Edgewood Management Corporation, illegally retaliated against her in violation of Maryland state law prohibiting discrimination when she, following the law and company policy, reported her subordinate's gender discrimination complaint about an Edgewood Management executive.
The subordinate has a complaint pending before the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Ms. Jackson worked at Edgewood for more than three decades as the community manager at the Glenview Garden apartment complex in Glen Burnie, Maryland. Ms. Jackson's employment with Edgewood was remarkable because she had superlative annual reviews and absolutely no disciplinary actions against her during her tenure at the company. However, Edgewood then disciplined Ms. Jackson twice in the last two months of her employment after she reported an employee's gender discrimination complaint to her second-line supervisor.
After Ms. Jackson asked Edgewood to reconsider the first discipline, it responded by disciplining her for a second time and by transferring her to two separate jobs over 40 miles away and by reducing her compensation by 10%.
Jackson's Attorney Nicholas Woodfield with D.C.-based The Employment Law Group® law firm (TELG) responded to the verdict saying, "This sends a message to employers that they have to take discrimination complaints seriously and that juries will not tolerate an employer's retaliation for an employee's good faith effort to report discrimination."
This ruling is one of the first trials to be decided after a March decision by the U.S. Supreme Court in the Staub v. Proctor Hospital case. This decision held that if a supervisor retaliates against someone who complains of discrimination and the retaliation leads to the employee's termination, the employee could sue the company for retaliation even if the supervisor was not the final decision maker and even if the final decision maker is unbiased.
"With the economy still at a downturn in the U.S., employers think they get more latitude to operate their businesses and wrongly believe the courts may turn a blind eye to discrimination and not support whistleblowers," said Scott Oswald, a TELG attorney.
"But the jury's verdict in the Jackson v. Edgewood case proves that theory to be dead wrong, as jurors believe employers should be held accountable for violating the law regardless of the economy."
The defendants are disputing the jury's verdict.
To speak with Donna Jackson or her attorneys at The Employment Law Group®, please contact:
Nicholas Woodfield : (202) 261-2806
Scott Oswald : (202) 261-2812
About The Employment Law Group
The Employment Law Group® law firm is one of the premier employment law firms representing individuals from all over the United States and around the world in EEOC, Sarbanes-Oxley and other whistleblower cases against the government and publicly held U.S. corporations. The firm's attorneys have more than 70 years of experience litigating on behalf of individuals against employers who disregard federal and state whistleblower and employment laws.
SOURCE The Employment Law Group