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Los Angeles Litigation Law Firm 424-284-2401

Ophthalmologist Files Racial Discrimination Lawsuit Against Hospital System


It is difficult to work in an environment where people assume the worst about you and go out of their way to make it difficult for you to perform your job duties.  The legal term for this is a hostile work environment.  Sometimes a hostile work environment arises because you complained about others in your workplace not doing their jobs properly; when this happens, it is employer retaliation, which is illegal.  In other cases, your coworkers antagonize you from the beginning, just because you are you.  When there is a pattern at your place of employment where people who share a certain personal characteristic, such as all being of the same race or all being mothers of minor children, routinely face mistreatment, you may have a strong case to allege that employment discrimination is happening at your workplace.  Even before you contact the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, contact a Los Angeles race discrimination lawyer.

Plaintiff Claims That His Demotion Was Racially Motivated

Last month, an ophthalmologist filed an employment discrimination lawsuit against the hospital system where he works.  The lawsuit alleges that the employer, which operates hospitals and outpatient clinics throughout Northern California, systematically “disrespects” and “undermines” African-American employees.  The NBC News website did not specify when the plaintiff began working for the employer, but in 2015, he was promoted to the position of Chair of the Ophthalmology and Optometry Department.  In 2017, he was promoted to medical director of surgical specialties.

In the lawsuit, the plaintiff claims that “racial discomfort” on the part of the colleagues led the employer to demote him, reducing his pay by 40 percent, and, in 2020, to place him on a performance improvement plan.  As of 2023, the plaintiff was still working for the employer.

The lawsuit includes statements from seven other Black physicians who claim to have experienced similar mistreatment by the same employer.  For example, their supervisors labeled them as “disruptive” and “intimidating” and took adverse actions against them for doing routine parts of their jobs that were necessary for patient care, such as when one doctor insisted that a patient undergo an ultrasound before the doctor performed a liver biopsy.  For example, a physician who worked for the employer from 2003 until 2013 said that, on her day off, her supervisors had a live feed camera installed in her supply closet without her knowledge so that her supervisor could watch her as she worked; she did not find out that the camera was there until a hospital maintenance worker told her about it.  Undue scrutiny is an adverse action that counts as discrimination when it is racially motivated.  Another doctor said that coworkers tried to prevent him from parking in a parking space reserved for physicians.

Speak With a Los Angeles Employment Discrimination Lawyer

A Los Angeles employment discrimination lawyer can help you if racial discrimination is an ongoing pattern at your place of employment.  Contact Litigation, P.C. in Los Angeles, California to discuss your situation or call (424)284-2401.


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