Amazon sued for discrimination against a transgender employee

By : |August 11, 2017 0

Lawsuits are making daily headlines in the Silicon Valley these days. Next in line is Amazon that faces a lawsuit from two former employees accusing the company of “unrelenting discrimination and harassment.” The Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund (TLDEF) filed the lawsuit on behalf of the couple- Allegra Schawe-Lane and Dane Lane alleging that Schawe-Lane experienced “discrimination and harassment by Amazon employees, supervisors and managers” after she notified her employer that she is a transgender.

According to the lawsuit, she was intentionally referred to by male names such as “it,” “sir,” “he/she,” “chick with a dick,” “shemale,” “tranny”  and “tranny prostitute” with the purpose of humiliation, sexual harassment, threats of physical violence, and “hostility” that made it hard for her to use the women’s bathroom, pay deductions and messed up lot of other routine things for her.

Schawe-Lane’s partner too faced retaliation, sexual harassment, disparaging comments from coworkers and a hostile work environment, according to the lawsuit. For example, one of Lane’s employees allegedly touched him in a sexual way, “gyrated his crotch” and offered him porn and sex toys.

“My husband Dane and I were devoted to our jobs. In return, we were treated atrociously by our co-workers and our bosses, simply because I am a woman,” Allegra said in a statement issued by the TLDEF. “The trauma we withstood still impacts us negatively today, creating serious health problems and leaving us with no money to pay for the doctors we desperately need.”

The couple claim they made dozens of complaints to Amazon management and human resources in person, in written form, and through Amazon’s corporate hotline—but the company did not investigate or take action.

In addition to the damages, the couple is asking the court to force Amazon to put in place programs and policies that would prevent the harassment and ensure equal employment opportunities for people who are transgender, have transitioned genders or are undergoing a gender transition.

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