Conductor files racial discrimination lawsuit against UP railroad company

Michelle Keahey, East Texas Bureau Aug. 8, 2011, 1:56pm

MARSHALL - A railroad conductor claims he lost his job because he complained about racially derogatory remarks directed at him and has filed a lawsuit against his former employer.

Louisiana resident Leroy Hicks Jr. filed suit against Union Pacific Railroad Co. on Aug. 4 in the Eastern District of Texas, Marshall Division.

Hicks began his employment with Union Pacific in June 2004 and worked as a conductor until his termination in June 2009 for allegedly getting on and off moving equipment. He argues that non-African American employees have not been as harshly disciplined for committing the same or similar offenses.

According to the lawsuit, prior to his termination, Hicks made formal and informal complains regarding racial discrimination, including complaints about racially derogatory remarks directed at him. Hicks argues he was terminated due to his complaints of racial harassment which constitutes disparate discipline and unlawful retaliation.

The defendant is accused of violating Hicks' civil rights and the Louisiana Employment Discrimination Law.

The plaintiff is seeking damages for pay and fringe benefits, compensatory and punitive damages, back pay, reinstatement, front pay, court costs and attorney's fees. Hicks is also asking the Court to issue an injunction preventing the defendant from further racial discrimination and retaliation.

Hicks is represented by Gregory G. Paul of Morgan & Paul in Sewickley, Pennsylvania. A jury trial is requested.

Case No. 2:11-cv-00347

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