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The Austin Police Department faces unpaid overtime investigation

The Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor is investigating the Austin Police Department over allegations of unpaid overtime, a matter that the police union expects to result in a lawsuit, according to Officer.com on July 10.

According to documents released by the Austin American-Statesman, Austin police officers regularly show up early to work in order to be ready for the shift ahead of them.

Austin City Council members were notified in a memo issued on July 8 by City Manager Marc Ott that the Labor Department had reached out to the city’s law department over concerns regarding the unpaid time.

Austin Police Association president Kenneth Cassaday said they are working through drafts of a lawsuit and noted that the union will be holding meetings from now until August to explore legal options and gather other police officers’ input.

Our Austin attorneys at The Melton Law Firm work diligently to protect employees from being taken advantage of by the companies they work for, including when overtime regularly goes unpaid. Call us at (512) 330-0017 today to learn more.

Six sue Lake Charles Wal-Mart for wrongful termination

Six plaintiffs filed a lawsuit against Wal-Mart in Lake Charles, Louisiana, claiming they were wrongfully terminated based on their race and age, despite their long-term experience working for the company, Market Watch reported on June 26.

Ironically, the lawsuit was filed days after Wal-Mart decided to pull out all products containing the Confederate flag from its shelves due to racial tensions surrounding the symbol.

According to the lawsuit, the Lake Charles’ store manager Leah Loerwald practices discrimination among the staff. Loerwald was also proven guilty by a jury in a previous discrimination case. Instead of firing her, Wal-Mart transferred her to the Lake Charles store.

Workplace discrimination should never be tolerated. If you have been singled out at work due to your race, gender, age, or another factor, the legal team at The Melton Law Firm in Austin may fight on your behalf in court. Call our offices at (512) 330-0017 today to begin taking action.

Abercrombie found guilty of discrimination for not hiring woman who wears hijab

Earlier this month, the United States Supreme Court found in favor of Samantha Elauf who filed a religious discrimination lawsuit against retail company Abercrombie & Fitch for not hiring her when she was 17 because she wore a hijab, a traditional headscarf worn by Muslim women.

In the ruling penned by Justice Antonin Scalia, it was noted that “an employer may not make an applicant’s religious practice, confirmed or otherwise, a factor in employment decisions.”

Elauf applied at the company’s Tulsa, Oklahoma branch as a kid’s store sales person in 2008. Documentation revealed that she received consistently high marks during her interviews, but the regional Abercrombie manager recommended that she be downgraded for not ascribing to “a classic East Coast collegiate style of clothing.”

There are a lot of ways in which an employer or a prospective employer can willfully or unintentionally violate the rights of his or her employees. If you feel like your rights as an employee have been violated, contact the Austin discrimination attorneys of The Melton Law Firm today by calling (512) 330-0017.

Texas court rejects wrongful termination suit of football coach

The appeal claim of wrongful termination by Michael Charles “Mike” Leach against Texas Tech University was recently rejected by the Texas Supreme Court, according to NBC DFW on May 9.

The 7th Texas Court of Appeals sided with the lower court in November 2014. The Supreme Court’s denial of Leach’s appeal on May 1 upholds those previous decisions.

Leach’s legal counsel, said he plans to discuss new legal responses to the circumstance at hand with his client, who is now a football coach at Washington State University.

Texas Tech fired Leach over allegations that he mistreated a player, which led to the student suffering a concussion. Leach claimed that the boy’s father, former ESPN broadcaster Craig James, incited these allegations. According to court documents, the university only fired Leach after he went to the media.

The attorneys at The Melton Law Firm in Austin represent those who have been wrongfully terminated or discriminated against at work. Contact us today at (512) 330-0017 today to discuss your legal options and begin taking action.

Former credit union branch manager sues over wrongful termination

Sugarland, Texas resident Roxanne Johnson, who worked as a branch manager at Texas Dow Employees Credit Union’s Rosenberg location beginning in 1996, filed a lawsuit against the company with claims of racial discrimination against her in 2014, the Southeast Texas Record reported on April 30.

The complaint stipulates that Johnson received positive performance reviews during her tenure as branch manager and was not issued any disciplinary actions regarding her work ethics. Despite this, the company promoted a Caucasian employee who had been with the company for fewer years than Johnson on July 1, 2014. That same manager terminated Johnson on July 10, 2014 for perceived “forced balancing.” When she collected unemployment, Johnson found out that this was not the official reason she was fired.

According to the lawsuit, the company failed to present evidence of formal decision making, policy or documents that justified Johnson’s termination.

The attorneys at The Melton Law Firm in Austin know that employees are often vulnerable to mistreatment and discrimination by their employers. Although you may feel powerless, there are methods of legal recourse that can hold your employer accountable. Call our offices at (512) 330-0017 today to learn more.

Hung jury in Jefferson County over racial discrimination case

The trial of a former employee of American Valve and Hydrant Manufacturing who was seeking punitive damages for racial discrimination and retaliation ended in mistrial on April 6, the Southeast Texas Record reported.

African-American Dennis Dumes said his former employer, American Cast Iron Pipe and American Valve, failed to promote him over the course of 27 years despite positive performance reviews–promoting Caucasian workers instead.

The jury decided that race was not a motivating factor as to why American Valve decided not to promote Dunes after August 25, 2009; however, the jury was not able to confidently determine whether Dunes was not promoted after that time due to retaliation over filing a complaint with the EEOC and the eventual lawsuit. Due to the hung jury, the trial was declared a mistrial.

If you have been the victim of retaliation, discrimination, or wrongful termination at your place of work in Austin or other areas in Texas, seek legal assistance from our attorneys at The Melton Law Firm by calling our offices today at (512) 330-0017.

Transgender man settles case against AT&T for undisclosed amount

Transgender man Matthew Hileman and his former employer, multinational telecommunications corporation AT&T, Inc., and the city of San Antonio, Texas have settled the lawsuit Hileman lodged against the latter two for an undisclosed amount 15 months after he first filed the case.

According to Hileman’s complaint, back in 2014, he asked to be reassigned to another office because he could no longer endure the insults and jests hurled his way by his co-workers regarding his sexuality and was fired the week after.

Hileman then filed the first claim of transgender discrimination under San Antonio’s new non-discrimination ordinance that took effect in September 2013.

After mediation between Hileman and AT&T in September 2014 did not reach any legal consensus, AT&T denied any liability in the case and told the city attorney’s office that it had cleared two of the employees that Hileman accused of discrimination of any wrongdoing.

If you have experienced wrongful termination, discrimination, sexual harassment, or a hostile work environment, the attorneys at The Melton Law Firm may help you hold the responsible parties fully accountable. Call our offices at (512) 330-0017 today to begin taking action.

Texas Roadhouse versus EEOC in age discrimination lawsuit

Restaurant chain Texas Roadhouse is currently battling a lawsuit lodged against it by the Obama administration in the form of the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission over allegations of age discrimination, the Hill reported on March 23.

Republicans on the House of Representatives education and workforce committee held a hearing on March 24 to address what they call a problem that has been plaguing the EEOC. The group believes that the EEOC has been filing suits against businesses that did not stem from any complaint.

Texas Roadhouse chief executive officer and founder W. Kent Taylor said the agency is targeting his company and noted that it should “explain to Congress why it chases no-complaint cases when there are over 70,000 cases of racial and other complaints of discrimination that are back-logged on and not acted on.”

If you have suffered from discrimination in your workplace based in Austin or other areas in Texas, our attorneys at The Melton Law Firm may represent your rights and interests against the people or parties who caused you to suffer. Call our offices at (512) 330-0017 to learn more about pursuing a claim.

Supreme Court may side with plaintiff in case versus Abercrombie

Although the United States Supreme Court has yet to give its final ruling over a workplace discrimination case disputing religious freedoms, the group so far appears to be agreeing with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission during the oral arguments that took place on February 25, the Hill reported.

The plaintiff is Samantha Elauf, a practicing Muslim who claims she was denied employment as a worker at an Abercrombie & Fitch Kids store in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 2008 because at the time of her application, she had donned a black headscarf called a “hijab,” which Abercrombie says is not in accordance with their “look policy.”

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said the prospective employer should ask the potential employee if he or she has a problem with the look policy – not immediately dismiss them or refuse them the opportunity for employment.

The EEOC argued that Abercrombie’s refusal to accommodate Elauf’s religious beliefs was in violation of the Civil Rights Act, specifically Title VII.

New Albany, Ohio-based Abercrombie, on the other hand, was of the opinion that Elauf failed to inform the hiring managers of the conflicting interest and that letting her stay in the company would saddle the company with an undue burden.

The case was lifted to the Supreme Court after the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals sided with Abercrombie. Prior to that, a federal district court sided with the EEOC.

Contact our attorneys today at The Melton Law Firm by calling (512) 330-0017 if you have an employment issue in Austin or other areas in Texas that you need our legal help with.

Religious truck driver terminated from his post

Rio Grande Valley, Texas resident and veteran truck driver Ramiro Olivarez claimed he was fired from his position as a truck driver by his employer, Falfurrias-based On Point Services, for repeatedly writing “Jesus” as the name of his co-pilot, the Daily Mail reported on February 14.

The company uses this paperwork to validate performance records. Olivarez said that he was not asked to stop doing this prior to dismissal. Olivarez, who has written “Jesus” in as his co-pilot for his entire career, asserted that he would have complied with his employer’s order to stop doing this if any order had been given.

Olivarez’s termination papers said he broke federal and state laws by repeatedly using the name “Jesus” as the name of his co-pilot. Olivarez was also accused of submitting incomplete documentation and falsifying legal documents.

If you have been the subject of a wrongful termination by your employer in Austin or other areas in Texas, get in touch with our attorneys at The Melton Law Firm by calling our offices today at (512) 330-0017 to learn how we may advocate on your behalf.

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