Three Black employees are seeking $14.5 million in damages from Trump International Hotel for racial discrimination, the Washington Post reports.
In a civil complaint filed Wednesday in Washington, D.C. Superior Court, Dominique Hill, a former employee of BLT Prime steakhouse in the luxury Trump International Hotel, and Irving Smith Jr., a current one, accuse the manager of racial discrimination.
The suit accuses the Trump Organization and hotel managing director Mickael Damelincourt of steering Black employees to less lucrative shifts and subjecting them to discriminatory behavior by other staff and by guests, the report says. Another former BLT employee, JaNette Sturdivant, also joined the suit.
The Trump Organization dismisses the charges, saying the three employees worked for a third-party employer, ESquared Hospitality, not Trump International Hotel. But the plaintiffs’ lawyer, A.J. Dhali, claims that Trump International is responsible “because of the nature of the management contract between the hotel and ESquared,” the Post writes.
Smith and Hill allege that racist behavior increased after the presidential election. Smith told reporters that a coworker said, “This is white America time, you need to get used to it, and if you don’t get used to it you should go work somewhere else,” the report notes. He said management failed to respond to his complaints.
Hill alleges that he was fired for spilling an alcoholic beverage on a baby while a White coworker was given a pass for spilling champagne down a bride’s dress. The third plaintiff says a supervisor told her, “It’s good to see someone with Milano complexion here.” A Washington Post reporter observed the restaurant and confirmed that, while the day staff seemed “diverse,” the night shift bartenders were exclusively White.
SOURCE: Washington Post