MOBILE, Ala. (CN) – When a black worker complained to his white union rep about racism at Price Gregory International, the union rep “stabbed him repeatedly,” and Price Gregory fired the black worker but let the white man return to work, though he pleaded guilty to a felony, the fired worker claims in Federal Court.
Plaintiffs Melvin and Michael Powell claim Price Gregory fired both of them after the stabbing.
Michael Powell allegedly pulled the union rep off of Melvin Powell during the stabbing.
“Plaintiffs were employed by Price-Gregory on or about June 4, 2010,” the complaint states. “Plaintiff Melvin Powell was discussing the manner in which he and other employees were being employed with another employee, Roger Weaver, who was acting as the union liaison with the Price Gregory [sic], when Weaver attacked Melvin Powell with a knife and stabbed him repeatedly.
“Roger Weaver is a non-Black (non-African-American) male who was also employed by Price Gregory.
“Michael Powell, with the aid of other co-workers, stopped Weaver from stabbing Melvin Powell.
“The police were called and Weaver was arrested. Weaver ultimately pled guilty to a Class C felony and was sentenced to prison. His sentence was suspended pending his completion of probation.
“Michael Powell and Melvin Powell were terminated from the job. Upon release from jail, Weaver returned to the job and continued to work.
“But for their race, Michael and Melvin Powell would have maintained their employment. Their race was a motivating factor in the decision to terminate plaintiffs.
“Defendant’s conduct was done with knowing disregard for the law and amounts to outrageous and extreme conduct under these facts,” the complaint states.
The Powells seek reinstatement, back pay and front pay, costs and fees and compensatory and punitive damages for racial discrimination.
They are represented by Edward Smith of Mobile.
Weaver is not named as a defendant.
Price Gregory International describes itself on its home web page as “a leading energy infrastructure services provider.”