Louisiana worker sues over wrongful termination

In at-will employee, can be fired at any time for almost any reason. Employers do not have to give or have a reason to terminate an at-will employee. Under Louisiana law, most employees are at-will employees. Therefore, these employees do not have many protections under employment law. However, employers still have limitations on their behavior.

Under state and federal employment laws, employers cannot discriminate against employees based on their race, religion, national origin, gender or similar factor. Firing an employee for any of these factors constitutes a wrongful termination. However, racial discrimination is still common in Louisiana workplaces. Take, for example, a recent case where an African-American man has sued his former employer -- a railroad.

In the suit, the man claims that he was wrongfully terminated based on his race. He claims that white employees had more severe violations of workplace policies than him but we're not reprimanded in the same way he was. In fact, the man claims that white employees with more serious violations we're not terminated from their positions at all. The man also asserts that he did not violate company policy the way his employer claims that he did.

In the suit, the man is asking for compensation for the wrongful termination. These damages include compensation for humiliation, emotional distress, mental anguish and other damages.

Louisiana employees should know that when they face racial discrimination in the workplace they have legal rights. By filing a similar suit, people can hold their employers responsible for their illegal actions. Employers cannot terminate, hire or promote an employee based on that person's race. If they do, a lawsuit can hold them responsible.

Source: The Louisiana Record, "New Orleans Public Belt Railroad sued by former employee for allegedly racially biased treatment resulting in his termination," Andrew Stevens, Aug. 19, 2014