Whistleblower sues Laboratory Corp. of America over racial remarks

Michelle Keahey Jun. 28, 2011, 1:37pm

A Louisiana company that provides medical laboratory testing services for physicians and hospitals is being sued for allegedly violating the civil rights of an employee who complained about a supervisor's racial remarks.

James Litomisky filed suit against Laboratory Corp. of America on June 27 in federal court of New Orleans.

In the lawsuit, Litomisky argues he was terminated from his employment with LabCorp in retaliation for his objecting to, opposing, and refusing to cooperate with LabCorp's discrimination against its employees with respect to the terms and conditions of their employment on the basis of their race.

Specifically, Litomisky alleges his supervisor made racist remarks regarding African American LabCorp employees. He objected to this language and complained to the human resource department. He was told the employees who were the butt of the racial comments must file complaints in writing on the proper forms for any action to be taken.

Less than a month later, he was placed on a performance improvement plan, allegedly in retaliation for his complaints about the discriminatory behavior.

Litomisky also argues that his supervisor directed him to falsify quarterly performance management reviews of two African-American employees so that his supervisor could terminate them. Initially, he complied with the directive, but the next day he informed human resources of the incident and corrected the reviews. He was terminated from his position in October 2010, the lawsuit says.

The defendant is accused of violating the Louisiana Human Rights Act and the Louisiana Whistleblower Act.

The plaintiff is seeking damages for back pay, reinstatement or in lieu of reinstatement, front pay, compensatory damages including medical expenses, pecuniary damages, damages for emotional distress, lost wages and benefits, punitive damages and attorney's fees.

Litomisky is represented by Nancy Picard and Christina L. Carroll of Robein, Urann, Spencer, Picard & Cangemi in Metairie.

A jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Judge Lance M. Africk is assigned to the case.

Case No. 2:11-cv-01521

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