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  • Writer's pictureDavid Manes

Boss Allegedly Calls Employee “Ghetto” and Terminates Him When He Files A Race Discrimination Compla


Employee Files Lawsuit against Siemens Healthineers for Race Discrimination

Tyrone accepted the position of account manager in 2014, and his Caucasian, female boss immediately started making comments about his race. At a work conference where a South African drum band energized the crowd, Tyrone recalled how his boss turned to him and said, “I bet you feel at home with the African drums.” Uncomfortable with remarks like these, Tyrone tried to ignore them and carry on with his work.

Black man with hand over his face

For a work requirement, Tyrone prepared a presentation for his coworkers. The vice president of the zone played hip hop music while Tyrone set up. No other presenter had music played while setting up. Tyrone felt stereotyped and discredited. After the presentation, Tyrone shared how his boss pulled him aside and said, “The word is ‘ask’ opposed to ‘aks’, I guess that’s just part of your dialect.”

Tyrone recognized that his boss’s treatment of him was only worsening. Co-workers began to tell him of how his boss was saying inappropriate things about his family, intelligence, and race. In a private telephone conversation discussing work details with his boss, Tyrone listened as his boss said, “We just need to get the North Philly ghetto shit out of you. Not to be racist.”Tyrone listened as his boss said, “We just need to get the North Philly ghetto shit out of you. Not to be racist.”

Still, despite this ongoing harassment, Tyrone had the highest score on his Representative Certificate. But then, Tyrone’s boss placed him on a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) and allegedly told him, “I think it is time for you to start looking for another job.” Tyrone suspects that his boss found out that other workers were advising Tyrone to make an official complaint to Human Resources about his boss’s behavior because he was performing better than many of his coworkers.

When Tyrone did submit a formal complaint to HR, the investigation confirmed that his boss had been making inappropriate comments. However, instead of releasing Tyrone from the PIP, the vice president extended the PIP for 30 more days. In December, Tyrone filed a complaint with the EEOC, and then, a month later, he was terminated. Unfortunately, Tyrone isn’t surprised by the timing of his termination. He claims that his boss wanted to retaliate against him for filing a complaint against her racial discrimination.

No employee should deal with race discrimination while at work. Tyrone, now a client of KM&A, is fighting for his employee rights. KM&A advocates for women and men like Tyrone who have dealt with a hostile work environment due to their race.

Full text of this complaint, as filed with the District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, is available at docket no: 2:17-cv-01427-AJS

Kraemer, Manes & Associates LLC is an employment law firm with principal offices in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, serving all counties in Pennsylvania, focusing on employment law, business law, litigation, and civil issues. KM&A clients include employees, small businesses, parties in litigation, and people with a variety of legal issues.

For more information about this case, contact Attorney Kayla Drum at 412-626-5594 or at

NOTICE: All information contained in this statement comes from the Complaint which has been filed as a public record with the court. As dedicated civil rights attorneys, we strongly believe in the public value of telling our clients’ stories: violators can be held accountable, and other silent victims can feel empowered to stand up for their legal rights. Although we make every attempt to verify our clients’ claims, note that the defendant is expected to oppose our client’s position, and the court has not ruled one way or the other as of the date of this statement.

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