was I wrongfully terminated

I was terminated they say for sexual harassment, by a student who claimed I tired to grab her and kiss her, the director of my department state it was base on pass history, but I never had any incident of sexual harassment, I never had any written statement that I sexual harass anyone. And I think they were unable to prove the student case. I was told they were talking about the all of tech that work with me that we talk in a sexual nature with female students presents that may have been consider sexual harassment, I am the senior tech and the only black tech that work in the OR radiology, would say I was unfairly terminated, does this look discrimination

2 answers  |  asked Dec 23, 2009 06:59 AM [EST]  |  applies to Illinois

Answers (2)

Ryan Nalley
Based on the facts provided, you were not discriminated against, and presuming that you were employed at will in the private sector, then you were not wrongfully terminated. An employee at will in the private sector can be terminated for any reason or no reason at all.

Of course, if your race played a significant part of the reason they fired you (and if other non minority employers were permitted to to engage in the same behavior without consequence), then it would be a at least a primae facie case of discrimination--which is roughly Latin for having enough facts and evidence to go forward with a case--the charge being unlawful retaliation and/or disparate treatment. However, as you indicated, they suspected you of improper conduct.

This fact alone gives them a proper nondiscriminatory reason to terminate you. That is all that an employer must demonstrate to overcome a primae facie case of discrimination. Unless you can then show that the suspected misconduct was merely a pretext or excuse to fire you, your employer will prevail. Thus, it does not appear that they wrongfully terminated you, even if they were wrong about the sexual harassment allegations.

With that said, there may be potential issues with defamation of character if your employer publishes the reasons for your termination while knowing such reasons were untrue. But that is beyond the scope the scope of the discussion and you have not indicated to believe anything of that nature has occurred. Good luck.

Sincerely,

Ryan Scott Nalley
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posted by Ryan Nalley  |  Dec 23, 2009 09:39 AM [EST]
Ryan Nalley
Based the information provided, and presuming that you were employed at will, as is usually the case, then it is unlikely you were wrongfully terminated. An employee at will in the private sector can be terminated for any reason or no reason at all. Of course, if your race was the actual reason that they terminated you, then it would be a wrongful termination. However, as you indicated, they suspected you of improper conduct. This fact alone gives them a proper nondiscrimiatory reason to terminate you, which is all that an employer is required to demonstrate in order overcome a claim of discrimination. Thus, it does not appear that they wrongfully terminated you, even if they were wrong about the sexual harassment allegations. Good luck.

Sincerely,

Ryan Scott Nalley

posted by Ryan Nalley  |  Dec 23, 2009 08:53 AM [EST]

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