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Discrimination against an individual for a child's interracial relationship may support a claim of race discrimination under Title VII.

January 1, 2011
Young v. St. James Mgmt., LLC, 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 115587 (E.D. Pa. Oct. 29, 2010)

The plaintiff alleged that his employment as a maintenance technician (and his lease in the apartment he rented from his employer) was terminated because his employer objected to the presence of his African American son together with the son's Caucasian girlfriend in the apartment building. In support of his claim that his employer's termination of his employment and apartment lease was a pretext for racial discrimination, the plaintiff alleged that members of management made comments reflecting their disapproval of his son being seen with a Caucasian female in the apartment building. In denying the employer's motion for summary judgment, the court determined that the plaintiff's claim constituted a reasonable application of the "individual's interracial association" doctrine pursuant to Title VII. Specifically, the court noted that the plaintiff's claim is logically consistent with the principles of Title VII in that, if he were Caucasian, his son would be Caucasian and his employer would not have had an issue with his son's relationship. As a result, it will ultimately be a question for the jury to determine whether the plaintiff's employment and lease were terminated because of his son's interracial relationship.

Case Law Alert - 1st Qtr 2011

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Lee C. Durivage
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(215) 575-2584
lcdurivage@mdwcg.com

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