Physical threats of violence, racial slurs and intimidation - this isn’t a safe workplace. For African American supervisors and workers at the General Motors (GM) Powertrain plant in Toledo, Ohio, this was their workday - everyday. After 14-months of violent racist threats, an African American supervisor had to leave his job. He and eight other African American current and former employees at the GM Toledo Powertrain plant have filed a lawsuit. They filed the suit after they reported these incidents of racism, and GM did nothing. Tell GM to end their culture of racial intimidation and implement policies that protect all workers - no one should fear for their life at their job.
An atmosphere of violent racial hatred made them fear for their lives. One employee found a noose in their locker with the words ‘whites only’ graffitied. An African American supervisor found gun and ammo magazines on his desk, after he received death threats from white employees. Some of those threats went so far as to threaten assault with factory equipment. In one instance, a white co-worker told his black supervisor that ‘back in the day, a person like [him] would have been buried with a shovel’. He reported the incident and his co-worker even admitted to it, but he was told to push it to the side. The threats only got worse. Send the message to GM, workplaces shouldn’t be places of racial terrorism. End racial intimidation in the workplace and put in place policies that protect workers from harassment.
After some of these events, employees filed police reports, others filed complaints with the Ohio Civil Rights Commission. The Commission enforces laws against discrimination, and conducted a 9-month long investigation into this GM plant. They found that GM allowed a racially hostile environment to flourish. Toledo Powertrain may not be the only GM plant where this is the norm. Tell GM to create company-wide policies that protect workers from harassment. Those policies could include: diversity training, creating a clear process for complaints, installing cameras, increasing security, or penalizing workers who create an environment of racial hostility.
GM shouldn’t be allowing racial hatred and intimidation to go unnoticed. Tell GM to protect workers from harassment.