Former employee claims furniture store did not promote him because of his race

By Kyle Barnett | Aug 24, 2012

GRETNA – A salesman for a Jefferson Parish furniture store claims he was overlooked for a promotion due to his race.

Reginald Lewis filed suit against Hurwitz Mintz Finest Furniture South and Ellis Mintz in the 24th Judicial District Court on July 25.

Lewis claims he was employed by Hurwitz Mintz Finest Furniture South located at 1751 Airlione Dr. in Metairie for four years. The plaintiff alleges that during that time there were no African Americans in management and that he later found out that the defendant did not have many African American employees and had never employed an African American as sale manager.

Lewis asserts that at least three times throughout his employment new sales managers were hired and each time he inquired about filling the position himself, but someone else was hired instead of him. The plaintiff alleges that in December 2011 his employers hired another sales manager without ever posting the job opening and that at that time he filed a complaint with the U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission.

Lewis claims that he was passed up for the sales manager position due to racial discrimination.

The defendant is accused of negligent infliction of emotional distress on a continuing basis throughout the plaintiff's employment.

An unspecified amount in damages is sought for conscious pain and suffering, physical injury, great mental distress, humiliation, emotional distress, loss of income and employment, loss of benefits, loss of wages, loss of anticipated wages, loss of promotion, defamation and loss of employability.

Lewis is represented by New Orleans-based attorney Daryl A. Gray.

The case has been assigned to Division H Judge Glenn B. Ansardi.

Case no. 717-447.

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