Fort Bend County woman sues senior living facility, alleging discrimination

Kasey Schefflin-Emrich Sep. 17, 2015, 1:06pm


An African-American woman from Fort Bend County is suing a retirement home community, alleging it engaged in discriminatory and unlawful employment practices.

Loria Walker of Fort Bend County filed a lawsuit July 27 in the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas against Brookdale Senior Living Inc., alleging violations of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, Chapter 21 of the Texas Labor Code, the Fair Standards and Labor Act, and the Texas Health and Safety Code.

According to the complaint, Walker was an at-will employee for Villages of Meyerland, a Brookdale Senior Living community, and beginning in August 2014 she held the position of health and wellness director. The suit says throughout her employment, Walker was a victim of a discriminatory work environment as she was refused training, forced to endure excessive hours, subjected to derogatory comments related to her race, and was blamed for situations that didn't happen.

Additionally, Walker was sent home early if a Caucasian male who didn't want her taking care of his mother who was on the defendant's premises, the suit says. At some point, Walker was even asked to transfer to another location as a solution to this issue, the lawsuit states.

The suit states after Walker reported the defendant's discriminatory practices to the EEOC in January, she was terminated for allegedly violating the Nurse Practices Act and making transcription errors. Walker contends this reason was pretextual and her termination was in retaliation for opposing unlawful practices.

The plaintiff alleges she didn't receive overtime compensation when she worked more than 40 hours in a given week. and that Brookdale Senior Living acted with malice and in reckless regard for her federally protected rights.

Walker seeks compensatory damages, punitive damages, liquidated and unliquidated damages, unpaid overtime wages, back and front pay, attorney fees, court costs and other relief deemed appropriate by the court. She is represented by attorneys Don T. Nguyen and Dasean A. Jones of Jones & Associates in Houston.

Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas case number 4:15-cv-02153.

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