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Sunday, May 19, 2024 | Back issues
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Ex- Exec Says Quest Fired Him for Protesting ‘Shell Game’ with Minorities

MORRISTOWN, N.J. (CN) - Its former executive director clams Quest Diagnostics, a medical services company, fired him for protesting that the company played a "shell game" to duck federal affirmative action policies.

Thomas Williams, an attorney, claims Quest fired him after he discovered that the company used various techniques to avoid reporting and conforming to federally mandated affirmative action policies.

"Quest is a federal contractor with 50 or more employees and has contracts with the federal government in excess of $50,000," Williams says in his complaint in Morris County Court. Therefore, it must comply with federal contractor affirmative action regulations.

While working at the company's corporate offices in Lyndhurst, N.J., Williams says, he discovered that Quest prepared affirmative action plans only when it was given advance notice by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance that it would be audited. Quest never performed such an audit at several locations, including the Lyndhurst headquarters, which housed many high-level employees, few of which were minorities, Williams says. Had it reported these numbers, the company would not have met federal guidelines, he says.

Upon reporting this information to his supervisor, Williams says, the supervisor, David Norgard, told him he should not concern himself with affirmative action - that it was "not his responsibility," although that it was specifically mentioned in Williams' job description.

Williams says he was fired after a meeting in which he reported the unaudited facilities to the company's CEO, Surya Mohapatra.

Williams, who is black, claims the company racially discriminated against him and fired him for blowing the whistle on its illegal policies. He is represented by David Zatuchni of Lambertville, N.J.

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