For Immediate Release

Contact:
Shari Ireton
University of Washington School of Law
206.685.9002

2008-09-24

UW Law Professor Prevails in US Supreme Court Decision

UW School of Law professor Eric Schnapper's plaintiff prevailed in CBOCS West, Inc. v. Humphries when the US Supreme Court, by a vote of 7-2, held that 42 USC section 1981 forbids retaliation against workers who complain about discrimination. In the decision handed down May 27, 2008 the Court ruled that employees are protected from retaliation when they complain about discrimination in the workplace, adopting a broad interpretation of workers’ rights under two federal civil rights laws.

The case was brought by a former restaurant assistant manager, Hedrick Humphries, who had complained that a white assistant manager had been motivated by racial discrimination in dismissing a black employee. In his lawsuit, Humphries, who is black, claimed that he then lost his own job in retaliation for his complaint.