Employee claims she was terminated after seeing job posting on Internet

Michelle Keahey, East Texas Bureau Jun. 13, 2011, 5:00am

TYLER - An assistant property manager claims she was constructively terminated after she saw her job position posted on the Internet and has filed a lawsuit claiming she is a victim of racial discrimination.

Claiming violations of her civil rights, Vawnika S. Gellington of Smith County filed suit against American Residential Communities on June 10 in the Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division.

Vawnika Gellington was employed by the defendant as the assistant property manager at the ARC facility at Shiloh Pines but states she was repeatedly denied promotions in favor of less qualified white applicants.

She alleges she was denied interviews for positions at various ARC facilities and was even lied to about whether open positions would be filled. According to the lawsuit, she was constructively discharged when her position was posted on the Internet.

"Plaintiff Gellington ultimately left employment with Defendant ARC after her job
was posted on the internet and it was clear that she had no future with Defendant ARC," the suit states. "Given such circumstances, Plaintiff Gellington felt that she was being terminated. Alternatively, Plaintiff Gellington was constructively discharged."

The plaintiff is seeking damages for mental, emotional and psychological damages, lost compensation, back pay and front pay including fringe benefits, punitive damages, attorney's fees, court costs and interest.

Gellington is represented by Alex A. Castetter of Stuckey, Garrigan & Castetter Law Offices in Nacogdoches and Karen Badgley in Tyler.

A jury trial is requested.

Case No. 6:11-cv-00300

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