(Please note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this workplace harassment/personal injury case and its proceedings.)
Showing the Defendants’ intent and motive is difficult. All courts have recognized that the question facing triers of fact in discrimination cases is both sensitive and difficult. There will seldom be eyewitness testimony as to the employer’s mental process U.S. Postal Service Bd. Of Govs. v. Aikens (1983) 460 U.S. 711, 716. Much of the time the employer’s intent must be extracted through a complicated process of panning and sifting. O’Mary v. Mitsubishi Electronics America (1997) 59 Cal.App. 3th 576,575. Plaintiff has provided sufficient disputed facts to warrant an analysis of his claims at trial.
The objective severity of harassment should be judged from the perspective of a reasonable person in the Plaintiffs position, considering all the circumstances. In harassment cases, that inquiry requires careful consideration of the social context in which particular behavior occurs and is experienced by its target. Oncale v. Sundowner Offshore Services, Inc. (1998) 118 S.Ct. 998, 1003. The total circumstances of Plaintiffs work environment as shown by the facts and evidence presented could clearly be considered by a reasonable person to constitute severe and pervasive harassing conduct. Proof of discriminatory intent may be direct, circumstantial, or may be inferred from statistical evidence. All evidence that a plaintiff presents can contribute to this inference, and should therefore be considered as cumulative. Stender v. Lucky Stores (N.D. Cal. 1992) 803 F. Supp. 259, 319.
Plaintiff has shown substantial disputed material facts to be presented at trial and therefore, Defendants’ Motion for Summary Judgment must be denied.
Discrimination based on sexual orientation and creed are protected by the California Constitution The facts presented by Plaintiff paint a clear picture of discrimination and harassment by Defendants based on perceived sexual orientation, affiliation with African Americans, and creed.
For the reasons stated herein, Plaintiff respectfully requests that this Court deny Defendants’ motion for summary judgment in its entirety.
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.