Justice Department Files Employment Discrimination Lawsuit Against the City of Jackson, Alabama

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department today announced the filing of a lawsuit against the city of Jackson, Ala., in the District Court for the Southern District of Alabama in Mobile, alleging that the city discharged Virginia Savage, an African American, from her employment as a circulation clerk at the city’s municipal library in retaliation for her complaints of racial discrimination and harassment by her supervisors, in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII prohibits employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin.

Savage was employed at the library from approximately September 2002 until May 2004. In February 2004, Savage submitted a written complaint to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), stating that her supervisors were discriminating against her on the basis of her race. As the complaint alleges, on or about May 7, 2004, the city of Jackson, through its agents at the library, discharged Savage from her employment "due to unacceptable conduct."

"Federal law guarantees equal access to employment opportunities without regard to race and prohibits employers from discriminating in the terms and conditions of employment," said Grace Chung Becker, Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. "Employers cannot retaliate against workers who either seek equal employment opportunities or oppose unlawful employment practices."