LAS VEGAS (CN) – A black worker sued Las Vegas’ Clark County School District, claiming a manager told him she preferred Mexicans, “because I can work them ’til they drop,” and, “Why get U.S. citizens when you can get Hispanics cheap?”
Kirk Curls sued the school district on July 30 in Federal Court, claiming it discriminated against him and other non-Hispanics working food service when it comes to job promotions.
Curls claims the school district’s bakery supervisor Wanda Gambino announced in February that full-time positions would be available but told workers: “Mexicans will get the jobs first because I can work them ’til they drop” and “Why get U.S. citizens when you can get Hispanics cheap?”
Curls says the jobs should have been posted publicly, but Curls did not post them, but selected “Hispanic employees she desired for the coveted full-time jobs,” though many could not speak or understand English, as required.
Curls said he could not even apply for a full-time job and filed a discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
After he filed the complaint, he says, several work supervisors told Hispanic workers who spoke English to spy on him, and he was fired on March 11 for not signing a document regarding a confrontation with a manager.
Curls says he never was disciplined at work, and that the insubordination accusation was a pretext to fire him for complaining about “racially deplorable working conditions.”
He seeks lost wages and punitive damages race and retaliation. The complaint says punitive damages are warranted because the managers’ acts were “fraudulent, malicious, oppressive and done with the intent to harm Curls.”
His attorney Mary H. Kinas was not available for comment Monday.
The Clark County School District said it does not comment on lawsuits.
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