Indianapolis Company charged with race discrimination

INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana Civil Rights Commission’s Deputy Director Akia Haynes announced today that Assisted Living Concepts, Inc. in Indianapolis faces a charge of racial discrimination after they terminated an African-American employee last year.

The probable cause finding stems from a July 24, 2012 Complaint filed with the Commission alleging racial discrimination in violation of the Indiana Civil Rights Law.

The Complainant alleges that she was terminated for violating company policy after complaining about being asked to document her exclusive desire to work with the only other African-American employee at the company although she did not have such a preference. She and the African-American co-worker were the only employees asked to submit such a form.

While Respondent, Assisted Living Concepts, Inc., asserts that the Complainant was fired for violating its dress code and appearance policy, there was no documentation or evidentiary support to affirm the allegation. As such, the Commission has reason to believe a discriminatory act may have occurred in this instance.

In order to prevail in this case, the Complainant must show that: (1) she is a member of a protected class; (2) she suffered an adverse employment action; (3) she was meeting Respondent’s legitimate business expectations; and (4) similarly-situated employees of a different race were treated more favorably.

A finding of probable cause does not resolve a civil rights Complaint.  Rather, it means the State has concluded its preliminary investigation and determined there is sufficient evidence to support reasonable suspicion that the Indiana Civil Rights Law has been violated. The Indiana Civil Rights Law provides remedies, including compensatory damages and injunctive relief, such as changes in the employer’s policies and training.

The Indiana Civil Rights Commission enforces the Indiana civil rights laws and provides education and services to the public in an effort to ensure equal opportunity for all Hoosiers and visitors to the State of Indiana. For more information, contact Brad Meadows, ICRC Communications Manager, at (317) 232-2651.